In what appears to be another setback for the Republican Party, the Democrats are ahead by inches in the Senate runoff polls in Georgia. Democrat Raphael Warnock has claimed victory against his rival and incumbent Senator Kelly Loeffler, while the other race is too tight to call.
Major news channels have not called either of the races well past midnight, but Warnock, who would be the first Black Senator from Georgia is confirmed elected, claimed victory. According to the latest updates, he was leading Loeffler by around 35,000 votes.
'We were told we couldn't win this election, but tonight we proved that hope, hardwork and with the people by our side, anything is possible,' Warnock said, according to the Daily Mail. Loeffler, speaking in Atlanta, refused to concede.
In the other race, Democrat Jon Ossoff was inching closer to Republican rival David Perdue, leaving President Trump and the Republicans string at the possibility of conceding Senate control to the Democrats.
If the two results from Georgia go the way they look like at the moment, the Democrats will be in an enviable position, controlling the White House, the House and the Senate, albeit by thin margins.
News networks including CNN and Fox News have called the runoff race in favor of Warnock. The senior pastor of Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta has been elected as the first black senator from Georgia. He is also the first Democrat to win a Senate seat from Georgia in some 20 years.
With 98 percent of the votes counted, Warnock was ahead of Loeffler by 1.2 percentage points.
The question of the control of US Senate now depends on the race between Republican Senator Perdue and Jon Ossoff. If Ossof wins in the tight race, Democrats and Republicans will have 50 seats each in the Senate, leading to a tie. However, the deadlock can be broken with the vote of Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, who will be the president of the Senate.
The Democrats hope that by flipping the Senate, they can pass some of their vaunted policy measures, which have been so far blocked by the majority Republicans. They include $2,000 relief checks, equality act, voting rights act, and climate action measures.
If the Republicans can retain Perdue's seat in the closely fought contest, they will effectively hold the veto power against President Biden's signature political and judicial decisions.
As per the latest count, Ossoff is leading Perdue by roughly 12,000 votes.