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June 11, 2020

2020 Georgia Primary Elections Recap

Georgia’s primary elections were held Tuesday to decide party nominees ahead of the General Election in November. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this election marked the first time all registered voters received an absentee ballot application in the mail.

Election day was marred by multiple and extensive voting problems, particularly in Fulton and DeKalb Counties. The Metro Atlanta Chamber released this statement in response:

“We are clear: Voting is a critical way to engage in the future of our region and nation -- and every vote should be cast and counted. The issues we're seeing reported in metro ATL and across the state are unacceptable and should be addressed swiftly by officials in our state. We encourage everyone waiting in long lines to stay the course, exercise your right to vote and share your concerns with your elected officials. And we will advocate for these issues to be resolved before November.” – Katie Kirkpatrick, Chief Policy Officer

Runoff elections will be held on August 11.

 

CITY OF ATLANTA MUNICIPAL OPTIONS SALES TAX

Voters in the City of Atlanta approved a continuation of the Municipal Option Sales Tax (MOST). The existing 1-cent sales tax funds water and sewer projects required by a federal consent decree. If MOST had not been renewed, water and sewer bills would have increased by 25%.

 

FEDERAL RACES

As expected, President Donald Trump won the Republican primary and former Vice President Joe Biden won the Democratic primary.

In the race for the senior U.S. Senate seat, incumbent Senator David Perdue did not face a primary challenger and will be the Republican nominee. Jon Ossoff beat out six other candidates for the Democratic nomination.

The race for the junior U.S. Senate seat currently held by Kelly Loeffler (R) is a special election that will take place on November 3. There are 21 candidates in this race.

Of Georgia’s 14 seats in the U.S. House of Representatives, three seats are open due to the retirements of Rob Woodall (R-7) and Tom Graves (R-14) as well as Doug Collins’ (R-9) challenge of Sen. Kelly Loeffler. Runoff elections for party nominees will take place in four of Georgia’s 14 Congressional districts.

All of Georgia’s 11 Congressional incumbents face opposition heading into the General Election.

 

STATEWIDE RACES

In the two non-partisan races for Georgia Supreme Court, Justice Sarah Warren defeated Hal Moroz and Justice Charlie Bethel defeated Beth Beskin.

Daniel Blackmen secured the Democratic nomination for Public Service Commission District 4. Blackmon will face incumbent Commissioner Bubba McDonald (R) in the General Election.

 

GENERAL ASSEMBLY RACES

Of the 236 seats in the Georgia General Assembly, 17 House and eight Senate seats are open. In the State Senate, there was also a special election after the death of Sen. Jack Hill (R-Statesboro), who served for over 29 years. Of the 26 open seats, 11 are committee chairmen or members of leadership.

Party nominees for five Senate and 10 House seats will be decided in the August 11 runoff.

 

MAC ENGAGEMENT

The Metro Atlanta Chamber directly engaged in the primary election through two entities: MACPAC and the Georgia Coalition for Job Creation (GCJC).

MACPAC is a political action committee that supports pro-business candidates at the state level. MACPAC has supported 92 candidates during this election cycle.

GCJC is an independent expenditure committee co-managed by the Metro Atlanta Chamber and the Georgia Chamber of Commerce. GCJC engages in direct voter contact. Notably, Sen. Jeff Mullis (R) avoided a runoff in a three-way race in District 53.

Detailed results from the election are available here.

KEY ELECTION DATES
 

Runoff Elections

Monday, July 20                 Early voting begins for Runoff Elections

Tuesday, August 11           General Primary Runoff Election Day

General Elections

Tuesday, September 15     Earliest day to mail in an absentee ballot for General Election

Monday, October 5            Deadline to register to vote in the General Election

Monday, October 12          Early voting begins

Saturday, October 24         Saturday voting (one day only)

Friday, October 30             Last day of early voting

Tuesday, November 3        General Election Day

 

Learn more about the candidates here.

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