The Candidates’ Market Report
The fate of the United States Senate hangs in the balance. Presently, Republicans have 50 seats, and Democrats (with Independents included) have 48. The two remaining seats are both in Georgia and are engaged in runoff elections – as per the state constitution.
The runoffs occur when neither candidate receives more than 50% of the total vote during the first round.
Perdue Vs. Ossoff
The results of the first-round regular Senate election on November 3 were:
- Republican – David Perdue (incumbent) – 49.7%
- Democrat – Jon Ossoff – 47.9%
In the November election, incumbent Senator Perdue fell short of an outright win by 0.3%. Libertarian candidate Shane Hazel drew 2.3%. On January 5, the date of the runoff, Hazel will not be part of the election.
Since election day, only one major poll has taken place, which handed Perdue a 2% lead, suggesting that those who voted for the Libertarian will come out for the Republican candidate.
- David Perdue (Rep) – 1/2
- Jon Ossoff (Dem) – 13/8
Loeffler Vs. Warnock
This special election is taking place because of Senator Johnny Isakson’s resignation. Governor Brian Kemp appointed Kelly Loeffler to serve out the remainder of his term – which is at an end.
The results of the first-round special Senate election on November 3 were:
- Democrat – Raphael Warnock – 38%
- Republican – Kelly Loeffler – 27%
- Republican – Doug Collins – 24%
- Democrat – Matt Lieberman – 5%
- Democrat – Ed Tarver – 1%
Both Warnock and Loeffler advance to the runoff. The majority of polling that took place before Nov. 3 gave the Democrat challenger a substantial lead of up to 19 points, but this doesn’t tell the whole story.
If the Republican vs. Democrat vote percentage is totaled, the GOP wins with 51% compared to 44% for the Dem hopeful. While Warnock is clearly more popular than Loeffler, it appears that Republicans are more popular than Democrats.
Polling since election day has given Loeffler a clear edge, with the exception of one poll by WXIA-TV/SurveyUSA that handed Warnock a seven-point lead. However, this poll was of less than 600 voters with a margin of error of more than 5%.
- Kelly Loeffler (Rep) – 4/7
- Raphael Warnock (Dem) – 5/4
As we wrote in this column back in October:
The shape of the 2021 Senate is arguably more important than who wins the presidency in November. Without a Senate majority, the president will be unable to pass major legislation (other than via executive order), which will seriously impact the effectiveness of the administration.
The future of the Senate now hangs in the balance, and it could be the defining branch of government during the next four years.
Read more from Mark Angelides.