As Georgia Voters Head To Polls, Ossoff Takes Slightly Harsher Tack On Trump

John Bazemore/AP

On the morning of the runoff election in Georgia’s Sixth District, Democrat Jon Ossoff said that he will stand up to President Donald Trump when necessary and expressed concern about the “competence and integrity” of his administration, using a harsher tone about the President than he has over the past couple of months of campaigning.

During an interview on MSNBC, host Stephanie Ruhle noted that Ossoff has rarely mentioned Trump since he secured the top spot in the runoff to replace Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price, despite launching his campaign as an anti-Trump candidate. She asked him where he stands now.

Ossoff offered more criticism for the administration than usual, but still avoided painting himself as a purely anti-Trump candidate.

“Actually, I think the concerns regarding the competence and integrity of this administration have only grown over time and it speaks to the need for a greater focus on accountability, on effective congressional oversight, not as a partisan matter but a matter of public interest,” he told Ruhle.

“While I don’t expect a congratulatory tweet from the President if I win, and he may not be my biggest fan, I’ll try to find common ground to work with him if we can serve the needs of metro Atlanta by working together, and I won’t hesitate to stand up to him if he threatens our interests or our values,” Ossoff added.

Ruhle asked Ossoff how he could stick to such a plan when the Democratic Party is focused on resistance to Trump.

The candidate replied that he will remain focused on what’s best for his district.

“Where bipartisanship is the best way to achieve those ends, I’ll seek bipartisanship. Where standing up to proposals that aren’t in this community’s interest, I’ll do that. The only test I’ll apply to policy or legislation is does it serve the community I’m seeking to represent,” he said.

Ossoff is right that Trump isn’t his biggest fan. Early on Tuesday morning, Trump sent out tweets bashing Ossoff and urging his followers to vote for Republican Karen Handel.