In Georgia, Democrat’s ‘Make Trump Furious’ Campaign Threatens Republican Control
A 30-year-old political neophyte has Republicans mighty nervous about the upcoming special election in Georgia. Democrat Jon Ossoff hit on the perfect campaign slogan when he decided to run for the House seat recently vacated by Secretary of Health and Human Services Tom Price. The candidate’s ‘Make Trump Furious’ campaign struck such a nerve that it has pulled in a record $8.3 million from across the country.
The seat has been a highly visible Republican prize for 43 years, having once been held by Newt Gingrich. It represents Georgia’s sixth congressional district, which encompasses Atlanta.
Republicans profess to not be worried in the least. After all, Ossoff is running in a field of 18, all of whom will be on the same ballot on April 18th, regardless of party affiliation. Eleven of the candidates are Republican and are split in their loyalties to Donald Trump.
Such fractiousness in the GOP is all to the good for Ossoff. The only way he can walk away with an outright win would be to gain 50% of the vote. Otherwise, the top two vote-getters will compete in a run-off election in June.
House Republicans are so not worried that one of their super PACs has thrown more than $2 million into anti-Ossoff ads, attacking his youth and inexperience. In addition, outside conservative groups have spent another $5 million on some pretty off-the-wall ads, full of distortions. Here’s why: Democrats have been turning out in droves for early voting, plus a poll taken two weeks before the election shows Ossoff dominating the field, with support from 43% of likely voters. The support of the closest Republican is at 15%.
District 6 isn’t the Atlanta that Newt Gingrich dominated. The demographics have shifted significantly over the years, making it much more likely to go blue than most of Georgia. Reuters cites a number of significant characteristics. The district:
- is white collar
- has median household incomes of $80,000 versus $50,000 statewide
- is well-educated, with nearly 60 percent of adults holding a college or professional degree
- is increasingly diverse, with about one-fifth being foreign born
- has naturalized citizens who comprise more than 40 percent of the district’s immigrants and are eligible to vote
Adding to Republican woes, Ossoff has attracted some high-profile support. Most notably, Georgia Representative John Lewis, of the 5th District, has made a campaign ad with the candidate and New Jersey’s Sen. Cory Booker has endorsed him as well.
But it’s the momentum of the grassroots, both around the nation and in Atlanta, that is carrying the campaign. Ossoff said:
The grassroots intensity here is electric, and it’s because folks are concerned that what is happening in Washington doesn’t represent our values. This is a chance for this community to stand up and make a statement about what we believe.
The candidate also has his eye on the bigger picture. He told Oglethorpe University’s College Democrats:
We have the first chance in the country to make a statement about what we stand for. The eyes of the nation are on us. We can win this thing on April 18 and send a message that will be heard across metro Atlanta, across Georgia, and across the country.
The country has already heard the statement — and has been willing to ‘Make Trump Furious’ to the tune of $8.3 million. If Ossoff is successful, the campaign slogan will be heard across America in 2018.
Watch John Lewis’ endorsement of Jon Ossoff here:
Feature photo, Jon Ossoff and John Lewis screenshot from YouTube video.