Twin Senate runoffs in Georgia could shape Biden presidency

·1-min read

We're still waiting for the outcome of the presidential race. But, with the US Senate currently balanced at 48 seats each for both Republicans and Democrats, the ambitions of a Biden presidency could well come down to what happens in the race for the Upper House in Georgia.

The state of Georgia, long a Republican stronghold, could be the site of two runoffs on 5 Janury to settle which party would control the Senate.

Should Democrats win them, Biden would be dealing with a majority in the Senate, increasing his chances for passing legislation and securing major appointment confirmations. Otherwise, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, a Kentucky Republican, could wield the power to block Biden.

Other races in North Carolina and Alaska also hold the potential to reshape the balance of power, but Georgia offers the more likely prospect.

“I can’t tell you how important it is that we flip the United States Senate. There’s no state more consequential than Georgia in that fight,” Biden declared at an Atlanta rally in October, when he campaigned alongside Democratic Senate hopefuls Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock.

Votes are still being counted to determine whether Ossoff will meet Georgia Senator David Perdue in a second round. Georgia law requires an outright majority to win a statewide office.

Separately, a Georgia special election to fill the unexpired term of former Senator Johnny Isakson will require a runoff between Warnock and Senator Kelly Loeffler, the Republican appointed to the post last year after Isakson retired.