The Latest: Candidates make final push in Georgia House race

AP News
Posted: Jun 19, 2017 9:15 PM
The Latest: Candidates make final push in Georgia House race

JOHNS CREEK, Ga. (AP) — The Latest on Georgia's 6th Congressional District race (all times local):

9:10 p.m.

Republican Karen Handel and Democrat Jon Ossoff are making their closing arguments in Georgia's nationally watched 6th Congressional District race.

Handel is using an election-eve rally to tell suburban Atlanta Republicans that her experience is what the traditionally conservative district needs. The former Georgia secretary of state is thanking a festive crowd at a restaurant in her hometown of Roswell, Georgia, where she reminds her supporters that Ossoff doesn't actually live in the district.

Across town, a boisterous crowd dominated by millennials chants "Flip the 6th! Flip the 6th!" as Ossoff takes the microphone.

The former congressional staffer turned investigative filmmaker sticks to his practice of not naming President Donald Trump but tells backers "politics does not have to be about fear and hate and deception and division."


7:25 p.m.

Most everything comes around eventually in politics.

At least that's true for Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal and his 2010 primary rival Karen Handel.

There was no love lost between them seven years ago in a bitter GOP runoff, but any vestige of that is gone ahead of Handel's tight battle against Democrat Jon Ossoff for Georgia's 6th Congressional District seat.

Deal is praising Handel at an election-eve campaign rally, saying the former Georgia secretary of state's experience should be the difference in the race.

Deal also says the Republican Party is "hungry" for more "qualified women" to carry the party's banner.


5 p.m.

President Donald Trump is knocking Georgia Democratic congressional candidate Jon Ossoff for not living in the 6th District where he's running.

The president is tweeting about Ossoff and his Republican opponent, Karen Handel, a day ahead of their matchup that is billed as a preview of the 2018 midterms.

Trump tweets that Ossoff "can't even vote ... because he doesn't even live there!" Ossoff lives in Atlanta, south of the suburban district.

The president initially misspelled Handel's name, but deleted that tweet.

Trump adds that Ossoff wants to "raise taxes and kill healthcare." Ossoff has not taken those positions. He says he's willing to change the 2010 health care law as long as consumer protections and expanded coverage are maintained. Ossoff says any tax changes should be "fiscally responsible."


4:50 p.m.

Georgia 6th Congressional District hopeful Jon Ossoff is getting help from a fellow Democrat who also tried to pull an upset in Republican territory.

Missouri's Jason Kander had perhaps the most notable campaign ad of 2016 during his failed bid for the U.S. Senate. The former Army intelligence officer assembled an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle while blindfolded to mock Republican attacks that he was weak on the Second Amendment.

He was in Atlanta's northern suburbs Monday knocking on doors and campaigning with Ossoff ahead of his Tuesday runoff matchup with Republican Karen Handel.

Kander lost in Missouri, but his three-point margin was much closer than Hillary Clinton's 18-point shellacking in the state's presidential vote.

Kander says Ossoff's youth and promise of "fresh leadership" can put him over the top.


4:30 p.m.

Democrat Jon Ossoff is blasting as "disgraceful" a last-minute ad that attempts to link the Georgia 6th Congressional District candidate to last week's shooting of a Republican House leader at a GOP baseball practice.

Ossoff says House Majority Whip Steve Scalise, who was shot on a suburban Washington, D.C. baseball field, is "fighting for his life." Ossoff calls the shooting a "national tragedy" that should not be politicized.

An obscure political action committee, the Principled PAC, suggesting attacks from "the violent left" would continue if Ossoff wins Tuesday's runoff against Republican Karen Handel. Scalise was shot by a man who identified on social media as a liberal, and he offered angry critiques of Republicans and President Donald Trump.

Handel says the ad should not be telecast or circulated.


10:45 a.m.

Karen Handel is getting more backup from national Republicans in the final hours of Georgia's tight 6th Congressional race.

On Monday, House Majority Kevin McCarthy became the latest GOP leader to join Handel campaigning in the suburban Atlanta district. President Donald Trump, Vice President Mike Pence, House Speaker Paul Ryan and two members of Trump's cabinet with Georgia ties — Sonny Perdue and Tom Price — have previously campaigned with her.

Handel and Democrat Jon Ossoff face off on Tuesday in a bid to replace Tom Price, and the contest has become the most expensive House race in history as both parties try to make a statement about voters' support for their agenda.

Handel and McCarthy started the day at a breakfast restaurant, shaking hands and urging people to vote on Tuesday.


10:30 a.m.

Candidates in the tight, hard-fought race to replace Tom Price in Georgia's 6th Congressional District have one more day to sway voters.

The race between Republican Karen Handel and Democrat Jon Ossoff is seen as a significant political test for the new Trump Administration. The district traditionally goes Republican, but most consider the race too close to call as voters head to the polls on Tuesday.

Both Handel and Ossoff have full schedules of events around the district on Monday and are trying to avoid talk about the national attention and money spent on the race.

Ossoff is seeking support from moderate voters with ads focused on the economy and national spending, while Handel is focusing on her experience as Georgia secretary of state.