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The Chances Of Winning The Two Senate Democrats Runoffs Georgia

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The Democrats face an uphill battle in the forthcoming Georgia Senate runoffs, according to a leading bookmaker.

Republican candidates are priced as most likely to win in both the special and regular election contests scheduled for the new year, Betfair said.

The balance of power in the Senate is now at a near tie for Democrats and Republicans, with the two runoffs set to define who controls the Senate from January.

As it currently stands, Republicans have 50 seats to the Democrats’ 46. Independent senators, who caucus with Democrats, occupy the two remaining seats.

In Georgia, as in nine other states, a candidate must achieve at least 50 percent of the vote to win, with the top two candidates left to face off in a subsequent election if this is not reached.

David Perdue, the Republican incumbent, has 49.7 percent of the vote versus Democrat Jon Ossoff’s 48 percent (a difference of 86,000 ballots), according to Reuters, which uses data provided by Edison Research.

With 99 percent of the votes counted, it is unlikely that Perdue will get the necessary votes to reach 50 percent.

The second Senate race—a special election between Republican incumbent Senator Kelly Loeffler and Democratic rival Raphael Warnock—was declared a runoff after Warnock received 32.9 percent of the votes, versus Loeffler’s 25.9 percent.

In this race, which was triggered after Johnny Isakson resigned from office before the end of his term, almost half of all the ballots cast went to a dozen other Democratic and Republican candidates who were also competing.

Republican U.S. Senate candidate Kelly Loeffler speaks to supporters during a Save Our Majority campaign rally on November 11, in Marietta, Georgia. Georgia Sens. Purdue and Loeffler are in a runoff race against Democratic U.S. Senate candidates Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff.
Jessica McGowan/Getty Images

UK bookmaker Betfair priced a Republican victory in the January 5 runoffs at 1-2 (implying a 65 per cent chance of winning) in the special election, and 4-7 (62 percent) in the second, regular Senate contest.

The Democrats were given odds of 6-4 for the Loeffler-Warnock race (40 percent) and 5-4 (43 percent) for Perdue versus Ossoff.

Joe Biden‘s party need only secure a tie in the chamber, as under that scenario the Vice-president-elect Kamala Harris would cast the deciding vote.

President-elect Biden is projected to win in Georgia, a Republican stronghold which is expected to turn blue for the first time since 1992. He secured 49.5 percent of the ballots cast, versus Donald Trump‘s 49.2 percent, at the time of writing at 11 a.m. ET. However the state’s ballots will first undergo a full hand recount.

Stacey Abrams, a Democratic former candidate for Georgia governor, has been applauded for her work in encouraging and mobilizing voters in many of the state’s predominantly black cities and counties, which it is thought benefited Biden.

Betfair spokesman Sam Rosbottom said: “This senate race holds a huge significance, as if the Republican incumbents are beaten, the Senate would be balanced 50-50 giving new VP Kamala Harris the decisive vote to end GOP control.

“While the Democrats, with the help of Stacey Abrams, performed well enough to force the run-off – and the state turned blue in the Presidential race – the current odds still suggest the two sitting Republicans, backed by a Republican governor, are still in the driving seat to keep their seats come voting in January 2021.”

Prior to the November 3 vote, Republicans enjoyed a Senate majority of 53 to the Democrats’ 45—plus two independents.

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