With Warnock’s Win, Democrats Breathlessly Watch Ossoff Inch Closer To Victory

January 6, 2021
HEPHZIBAH, GEORGIA - JANUARY 04: Georgia Democratic Senate candidates Rev. Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff speak before an Augusta canvass launch block party at Robert Howard Community Center on January 04, 2021 in He... HEPHZIBAH, GEORGIA - JANUARY 04: Georgia Democratic Senate candidates Rev. Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff speak before an Augusta canvass launch block party at Robert Howard Community Center on January 04, 2021 in Hephzibah, Georgia. On the final day before the January 5th runoff election, Warnock and Ossoff, who are challenging Republican incumbent senators Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue, respectively, made their last pitches to voters at a block party and canvass launch. (Photo by Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images) MORE LESS
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January 6, 2021

In the early hours of Wednesday morning, Rev. Raphael Warnock toppled Sen. Kelly Loeffler (R-GA), clinching one of the two seats Democrats need to wrench back Senate control. He’ll soon become Georgia’s first ever Black senator.

All eyes then turned to the closer Jon Ossoff-Sen. David Perdue (R-GA) contest, where a Democratic victory seems within reach.

If Democrats pull off the sweep, the Senate will be evenly split, giving Vice President-Elect Kamala Harris the tie-breaking vote. It also means unified Democratic control of the White House and Congress for the first time in 11 years.

As Georgia election workers keep counting ballots, President Donald Trump is spewing conspiracy theories and the Republican senators are so far refusing to concede defeat. Perdue promised to “exhaust every legal resource” in his quest to make sure “legally cast” ballots were properly counted. However, if both races finish outside a half a percentage point difference — as Warnock’s did and Ossoff’s seems likely to — there will be no recount, leaving the Republicans to choose whether to mimic Trump’s flailing efforts in the courts.

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In the early hours of Wednesday morning, Rev. Raphael Warnock toppled Sen. Kelly Loeffler (R-GA), clinching one of the two seats Democrats need to wrench back Senate control. He’ll soon become Georgia’s first ever Black senator.

All eyes then turned to the closer Jon Ossoff-Sen. David Perdue (R-GA) contest, where a Democratic victory seems within reach.

If Democrats pull off the sweep, the Senate will be evenly split, giving Vice President-Elect Kamala Harris the tie-breaking vote. It also means unified Democratic control of the White House and Congress for the first time in 11 years.

As Georgia election workers keep counting ballots, President Donald Trump is spewing conspiracy theories and the Republican senators are so far refusing to concede defeat. Perdue promised to “exhaust every legal resource” in his quest to make sure “legally cast” ballots were properly counted. However, if both races finish outside a half a percentage point difference — as Warnock’s did and Ossoff’s seems likely to — there will be no recount, leaving the Republicans to choose whether to mimic Trump’s flailing efforts in the courts.

Notable Replies

  1. This is why polling seems to always undercount Republican voters by a small percentage

    The voters who unexpectedly turned out for President Trump on election day existed for the entirety of his term, even if survey researchers never got ahold of them. One explanation that analysts are converging on is the idea that, as Sean Trende argues, what links these voters together is “low social trust” and that this variable can divide otherwise demographically similar groups like non-college educated whites. This kind of voter isn’t lying to pollsters as much as they are hanging up on them. And because those voters are already extremely difficult to find and talk to, when pollsters weight their samples based on the ones they do reach, they will still be wrong.:

  2. Prediction time: For the Nov GE, I had developed a model using public polling internals and top line and averaging them. I got a lot of the margins wrong in the battleground states because…well… a lot of the polls were trash. One state where my model did work, however, was Georgia. I had Biden winning by 0.49%. He won by a little less than a quarter point. In general, public polling tended to be more accurate in states where the metro areas are a dominant share of the total electorate (e.g., MN, GA, VA, AZ, OR, WA and other blue states).

    Here, the key is whether the Dems have won the EV by more than Biden did. Biden won the EV by 6 points and lost the E-Day vote by 22. EV was 80% of the total vote. E-Day was 20%. If the two Dems have won it by double digits as analysts like Nate Cohn think, then it means the GOP has underperformed Trump in the EV and need to outperform him on e-day in both turnout and margins. I think that’s a tall order and it’s why the two states are Lean D going into e-day.

    However, if the Dems have only performed about as well as Biden in the EV, the edge shifts to the GOP if they can drive turnout/margins.

    Utilizing public polling and analysts forecasts, I think the Ds have won the EV by 11 to 14 points. If that’s the case, the GOP needs to win the E-day vote by over 30 to have a chance. I think the e-day vote will be 22% of the total and the total vote will be in the 4.0 - 4.1 million range. Based on this, I think Ossoff wins by 1.6% and Warnock by 2%. Public polling and forecasts see the Dems winning by more, but there is a speculative aspect to all of this so I’m hedging. I could see the Dems outperforming and there’s probably as good a chance of that as the GOP winning e-day by 40 points. So, we’ll see.

  3. I know that most people expect the R’s to outvote the Dems on Election Day. It’s Conventional Wisdom.

    I cannot imagine a scenario in which Abrams and her Team have not prepared for this…

    Leave it all On the Field.

  4. Is there anyone who is monitoring polling places for turn out numbers? I have seen no pictures of lines or empty polling places.

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