The publicly stated reasoning for many of those Republicans is the imminent Senate runoff among Democratic senators. Rafael Warnock and Georgia Republican Herschel Walker. While that December 6 election will not decide the majority in the Senate, it could have major implications for control of the chamber.
A significant difference from this year’s second round and the one in January 2021 – when Warnock defeated the then Sen. Kelly Loeffler and Democrat Jon Ossoff defeated then-Sen. David Perdue to give Democrats a Senate majority – is the timing. After the pair of second-round losses, Republicans in the state changed the law to shorten the time frame. Instead of a nine-week campaign, this year’s second round is in early December – a short four-week sprint.
One consequence of the shortened second-round campaign is a significantly shorter early voting period — including apparently no early Saturday voting in this election, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported Sunday. Voters will also have much less time to request and return mail ballots.
Former President Donald Trump looms over the fast-approaching runoff election, who is widely expected to announce a 2024 presidential run at his Florida estate on Tuesday night. That announcement, planned and planned ahead of last week’s midterms, has raised concerns among some in the GOP that the former president’s 2024 campaign could reactivate the same electorate that cost Republicans two Senate seats in 2021.
Monday night also ended the largest uncalled race outside of Georgia: the Arizona governor’s race, where Democrat Katie Hobbs narrowly defeated Republican Kari Lake.
Hobbs — the outgoing secretary of state — squeezed past Lake, a former TV host and Trump acolyte. Her win was projected by most media outlets late Monday, after the last significant vote count from Maricopa County, the state’s largest county, was released. Lake was unable to make up enough ground to beat Hobbs in those final counts, making Hobbs the first Democratic governor in over a decade.
The race between the two women was incredibly contentious. Lake was arguably the loudest pro-Trump candidate statewide running anywhere in the country this cycle, proudly repeating Trump’s lies about a 2020 “stolen” election that Hobbs partially oversaw in Arizona as Secretary of State.
“For the Arizonans who didn’t vote for me, I’ll work just as hard for you — because even in this moment of division, I believe there is so much more that connects us,” Hobbs said in a statement shortly after her win.
Before the election, there was widespread fear that Republican candidates like Lake, who parroted false claims of a rigged election system, would not admit their own losses. But for the most part, even those who clung to the mythology of a stolen election in 2020 quietly admitted their own contests this year.
Lake didn’t immediately release a public concession to Hobbs late Monday, instead tweeting, “Arizons know BS when they see it.”