Warnock wins GA


Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Sen. Raphael Warnock at a campaign event

Democratic Sen. Raphael Warnock won re-election in a runoff race against Republican Herschel Walker on Tuesday in Georgia, giving Democrats the majority in the U.S. Senate, according to the Associated Press. 

In the general election last month, with almost four million votes cast, Warnock had 37,000 votes over Walker but didn’t meet the 50% threshold needed to avoid a runoff election.

The Democrats’ slight majority in the Senate now removes the need to negotiate power-sharing deals with the Republican party. The Democrats will now have a 51-49 majority, rather than a 50-50 split in the Senate, allowing President Joe Biden to push key legislation successfully through Congress.

1.9 million runoff votes were cast by early voting and mail. Georgia state officials were expecting an additional 1.4 million votes on Election Day, according to the Associated Press.

Warnock was elected to the Senate for his first term in Congress on Jan. 5, 2021 in an election runoff to fill the position that opened after Sen. Johnny Isakson resigned. His victory was the first time that a Black person was elected to the Senate from Georgia, becoming one of 11 Black people who have served in the Senate in history.

Warnock’s “campaign was the last, most expensive, and perhaps highest-profile race of the midterm campaign season,” according to The Boston Globe. Walker’s campaign was riddled with scandals, most notably allegations that alleged the outspoken pro-life Republican paid for abortions for two of his former girlfriends and abused a former spouse.

The Republicans’ loss comes off of a disappointing midterm election, where many candidates backed by former President Donald Trump failed to secure victory. Bound to “intensify the intra-party frustration,” according to the Globe, Walker was hand-picked by the former president, who watched another swing state seat fall to the Democrats.

Warnock grew up in Savannah, Georgia with eleven brothers and sisters. The son of a preacher, Warnock graduated from Morehouse College in 1991 with a degree in psychology. 

After graduating he went on to earn a PhD and began his career ordained in the ministry. He previously served as a Senior Pastor at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, where civil rights leader Martin Luther Jr. served as a pastor alongside his father.