Georgia runoffs will decide who controls US Senate |

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abc news political director rick klein and deputy political director mary alice parks for more on this mary alice let me let me ask you history would say these runoffs are a long shot for democrats they haven’t won many over the years given the makeup of the electorate in georgia and the nature of runoff elections so what are you looking for as voters head to the polls in georgia can we learn something from how joe biden did there yeah democrats are to be successful they have to stitch together a very narrow and very diverse coalition and joe biden just barely did that in november i think it’s important to remember that while joe biden won at the top of the ticket in the presidential election david perdue the sitting republican senator actually beat jon ossoff in that race by 88 000 votes so both democrats if they’re gonna win they have to outperform what they did in november so we’re going to be looking really closely at disillusioned republican voters that most likely split their tickets in november that went in and voted to help secure a win for joe biden but then went on to vote republican the rest of the ticket if those sort of independent conservatives or disillusioned republicans come out in force in a big way to make sure they send republicans back to the senate then democrats could be in real trouble that said we’ve seen unbelievable excitement and energy from black voters in downtown atlanta and i think it’s important to remember that the huge population boom in atlanta over this last decade really tells a part of the story of how the politics in georgia have just changed we’re looking at nearly two million new voters in georgia in the last 10 years and the majority of those are racially and ethnically diverse voters that just represent a really new georgia and new georgia politics and rick i want to talk a bit about what will happen tomorrow because we heard president trump at the top of the show they’re publicly pressuring vice president pence to somehow overturn the election when the electoral votes are counted now the vice president can’t actually do that so where is this request coming from well the president is talking to attorneys that tell me that the vice president has uh some wide authority because he presides over this joint session of congress but it is a strained legal theory at best to think that the vice president can insert his will or the will of a minority of members of congress for the will of the majority in the individual states every state has certified its election the legal process has played out in every state the electoral college has voted uh what what is supposed to happen tomorrow is a mere formality basically a backstop in case there are major election disputes and alternate slates of electors that hasn’t happened so the idea that vice president pence would at this late stage insert himself insert the will of a minority for the will of the majority would be unprecedented no indications that that will happen but president trump is looking for any out he can get in an increasingly desperate ploy to try to overturn the election and undemocratic clearly rick let me follow up on that but go back to georgia if if democrats win both of these races and as mary alice said there that’s a tall order forum what does that mean practically for the incoming biden administration still be a 50 50 senate that’s not exactly a landslide but what does it mean about what joe biden and the democrats could do with the senate majority look the difference between majority leader chuck schumer and the majority leader mitch mcconnell enormous if you’re joe biden it means you control the senate calendar it means you can guarantee essentially votes on your judicial appointments on your cabinet appointments it means that you can bring at least four votes items of the agenda doesn’t mean you’re going to win the votes no one can guarantee that but control of that of the senate floor is huge control of committees also huge if you’re looking at the potential for investigations much likely that you’ll have a more aggressive tact from the republican senate majority than you would from a democratic senate majority just ask ask president trump about what it looked like when the house flipped on him in his midterms so for the first half of the biden presidency uh having control having the democrats control even if it’s very narrow the narrowest of control is an enormous deal and i know the biden team has been trying to downplay the stake saying that their game plan is the game plan they are aware of what this means and of this enormous opportunity and frankly if it is a squandered opportunity democrats are going to have to ask why there’s nothing uh inherent in these races that says that democrats can’t win republicans would typically be favored in runoffs in a in a reddish state like uh like georgia but of course joe biden did win there as mary alice pointed out due to many of those ticket splitters and if he wants people to be uh engaged in his agenda there’s no real reason that you couldn’t hope that democrats would get elected in georgia to hand him that senate majority and mary alice biden did win there but we also waited a week after election day to find out that biden was finally projected to win georgia so when will we know the results of these races well state officials tell us it’s not going to take that long so here’s hoping for that but look americans have been incredibly patient it is remarkable that we have not known who is going to control which party is going to control the senate for two full months you know i think that we’ll probably have final results in the next few days i know the state officials have been working really closely with county officials to make sure that they are opening and processing absentee ballots ahead of time earlier this time so that they can press count press tabulation right when polls close tonight all right rick klein and mary alice parks thanks very much for that and as georgians continue to cast those final votes in those critical runoff elections to determine who controls the senate we’re hearing from some of the voters right there on the ground let’s listen i was reluctant a little bit not to go vote because i was thinking was this going to happen again no i absolutely was going to vote i’m very anti-abortion and the thought that we’re going to have a president and a vice president who believe it’s okay to murder a baby after they’re born yeah that’s not right and within the georgia gop and republicans and conservatives there’s been some mixed messaging on telling people like unless loffler and purdue take a hard line on something stay home and then others that are saying get out and vote no matter what even if we don’t see them possibly standing up to the election fraud or standing up for election integrity the way they want them to so i personally um i i want to see our senators fight for us but we have to vote they sure do you’re hearing from some of the voters there in georgia hi everyone george stephanopoulos here thanks for checking out the abc news youtube channel if you’d like to get more videos show highlights and watch live event coverage click on the right over here to subscribe to our channel and don’t forget to download the abc news app for breaking news alerts thanks for watching

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