Republicans prevented a loss in a GOP-friendly district Tuesday, but they still face a fight in the runoff.
Georgia Democrat Jon Ossoff, a 30-year-old political novice, fell just short of a shocking victory in a House race that had captured the attention of the political world as a referendum on President Donald Trump.
The results left Democrats hoping for an upset deflated at the ballot box once again, but Ossoff will get another crack at the district in a June runoff, when relieved Republicans are looking forward to a one-on-one race between Republican Karen Handel and the upstart Democrat.
Ossoff had 48 percent of the vote when the Associated Press declared that he would miss the 50 percent threshold for victory and instead qualify for a one-on-one runoff in June. The AP also declared that Handel, Georgia’s former secretary of state, qualified for the runoff with a second-place finish. Handel took 20 percent of the vote in the race for Georgia’s 6th District, left open by Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price, who had held the seat since 2004 without a serious challenge. Handel got nearly twice as much as the next-highest candidate, fellow Republican Bob Gray.