The 2020 presidential election had the largest voter turnout in the history of the United States. This historic participation was the result of a polarizing incumbent president, the Covid pandemic, and the ability of millions to vote by mail. One of the most pivotal states of the 2020 election cycle, Georgia, is continuing to see an active voter base as more than 940,000 absentee ballot requests have been submitted for their senate runoff.
According to a release from the Georgia Secretary of State’s office, those requests include 604,255 people who are eligible to receive mail-in ballots automatically. Georgia voters are required to request absentee ballots again for the runoff, even if they voted absentee in November, except those over the age of 65, members of the military, or physically disabled people who requested absentee ballots for the entire election cycle.
The number of absentee ballot requests bode well for democratic challengers Jon Ossoff and Rev. Raphael Warnock because mail-in voters tend to favor democrats. In addition, the incumbent Senators Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue are struggling to excite their base because of the doubt that President Donald Trump continues to cast over the presidential election.
For weeks, Trump has made a series of unfounded claims of fraud in the state, for which there is no evidence. Trump loyalist Governor Brian Kemp and Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger have both come under fire from the president for being complicit in what he describes as a rigged election. Republican National Committee Chair Ronna McDaniel attempted to persuade Republicans to vote in the elections but many believe, because of the president’s claims, that the election has already been decided and their vote will not count.
The January 5th runoff will decide who will control the senate. With such an important election on the horizon, once again all eyes are on Georgia.
December 07, 2020 – Voter registration deadline to vote in the Senate runoff election
December 14, 2020 – Advanced in-person or early voting begins
January 05, 2021 – Senate runoff election day