Georgia Senate race between Perdue, Ossoff goes to runoff

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Georgia Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate Jon Ossoff (left) and Republican candidate for Senate Sen. David Perdue (right) are headed for a runoff after a tight race for Perdue’s Senate seat. (AP Photo/John Amis)

ATLANTA (AP) — Republican U.S. Sen. David Perdue and Democrat Jon Ossoff will face off in a Jan. 5 runoff in Georgia for Perdue’s Senate seat.

Libertarian candidate Shane Hazel was able to get enough votes so that neither Perdue or Ossoff was able to clear the 50% threshold needed for an outright win.

Thousands of absentee ballots and in-person votes cast early needed to be counted after Election Night passed, forcing a long and tense wait before the race could be called.

The contest has already seen huge spending from outside groups on both sides and millions of dollars more are expected to pour into the state ahead of the runoff.

The race between Ossoff and Perdue, a close ally of President Donald Trump, has been characterized by sharp attack ads but relatively moderate political positions.

Both candidates pivoted to the middle vying for a state Trump won handily four years ago, but where swaths of suburbia have shown signs of disillusionment with the president.

Perdue sought to cast Ossoff as backing a “radical socialist agenda,” while Ossoff portrayed Perdue as a “corrupt” Washington insider who has been part of a botched pandemic response.

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