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Early Voting Soars 150 Percent — Georgia Special Election

20 June 2017

Handel and Ossoff are competing for Georgia's 6 Congressional District in three urban Atlanta counties left open when Tom Price left to become Secretary of Health and Human Services in Trump's administration. Ossoff says any tax changes should be "fiscally responsible".

Total spending in the Georgia race for all candidates has topped $56 million, including tens of millions by outside groups, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, a campaign finance watchdog in Washington, D.C., easily topping the previous record of $29.5 million set in a 2012 Florida race.

On Saturday, Handel campaigned with Price and Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, a former Georgia governor.

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Trump himself appeared at a fundraiser for Handel back in April, praising her as "incredible" and depicting Ossoff as "someone who is going to raise your taxes to the sky and destroy your health care". "And with a commitment to working across the aisle to get things done, to holding people in Washington accountable regardless of their political party, some fresh leaders can hopefully break through some of this nonsense".

Both candidates tried to avoid talk on Monday about the contest's national implications for Democrats and Republicans in the Trump era, but their supporters aren't treading as carefully. 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.

The district traditionally goes Republican, but most consider the race too close to call as voters head to the polls on Tuesday.

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Democrats fell short in special House elections earlier this year in Kansas and Montana, in districts that Trump won by double-digits. "Trump's handling of the shooting might bring home enough traditional Republican voters uneasy with the president to carry Handel across the finish line", Robert Cahaly, a Republican pollster based in Georgia told Politico.

Handel faces Democrat Jon Ossoff in a nationally watched matchup that Democrats want to turn into a referendum on Trump.

The special election is on Tuesday.

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Over the weekend, Ossoff had a much more intensive schedule of public events than Handel, and his pace is expected to increase even further on Monday, The Hill reported.