Ossoff the Slight Favorite in Georgia’s Sixth
My model projects that Jon Ossoff will receive 50.14% of the vote on Tuesday’s special election, which, when factoring the model’s margin of error, translates to a 51.00% chance of victory.
The model relies on a few variables — Donald Trump’s low approval rating, generic congressional polling the currently favors Democrats, Georgia sixth’s partisan voter index (PVI) as calculated by the Cook Political Report, and 2016 district presidential election results.
Ossoff has raised more than $23 million in his attempts to win the seat vacated by Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price who, in 2016, won the district by 23 percentage points and once held by Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich.
Georgia’s sixth congressional district is the most-educated district to be represented by a Republican; it has transitioned from a Republican safe seat to the most obvious example of evolving political coalitions: As the educated become increasingly Democratic, suburban districts throughout the country now offer Democrats a narrow pass to the House majority.
An Ossoff victory in Georgia’s sixth would be a further example of a national shift towards Democrats that could lead to a strong midterm showing in 2018 unless President Donald Trump improves his presidential approval rating. It might also scare Republicans from similar districts long unworried about reelection races (other vulnerable Republicans may be encouraged to retire if Ossoff wins). At its extreme, an Ossoff win might push Republicans into taking a harder stance on Trump and the man scandals surrounding his presidency.
Of course, that the race is competitive and has become the most expensive House race in history points to new national battlegrounds and Trump-caused problems for Republicans. A victory or narrow Ossoff loss doesn’t change that; a victory would, however, drive media coverage and hand Democrats a much-desired win for their resistance movement.