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House leader joins Handel on final campaign day

20 June 2017

A June 18 poll showed Ossoff just ahead of Handel, with 49.0 percent versus 48.9 percent.

But make no mistake: Republicans are closely watching the results to see just how much of a drag Trump is on Handel. Bernie Sanders' liberal wing of the party concerned that the Democratic establishment is recruiting and running too many moderates - and the establishment anxious that Sanders' insurgency could view a loss as proof the party needs to embrace a much more aggressive, populist, Sanders-like message. Republican Karen Handel had pulled in over $4.5 million.

"If the Democrats win the Georgia Sixth it should be a wake-up call to the Republican Party", GOP strategist Rick Tyler, ex-spokesman for Senator Ted Cruz's 2016 presidential campaign, told MSNBC.

The race between Republican Karen Handel and Democrat Jon Ossoff is seen as a significant political test for the new Trump Administration and spending could top $50 million, making it the most expensive House race in us history.

Ossoff is trying to flip the suburban Atlanta district that Republican Tom Price left to become Trump's health secretary.

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Robert Cahaly, a senior strategist at The Trafalgar Group, an Atlanta-based firm, told Politico that President Donald Trump's handling of the congressional baseball shooting may bring in enough votes for Handel. "I think that many people will see the handwriting on the wall".

That hasn't stopped the president from weighing in on the race.

Voters go to the polls on Tuesday to choose between Handel and Democrat Jon Ossoff in the race to replace Tom Price, now the president's secretary for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. She'll have even helped write the playbook, after relentlessly working to tie Ossoff to Nancy Pelosi and hitting him on national security.

Karen Handel: Running as a staunch conservative in a district where that normally plays well, Handel is relying on her extensive record in both public and private life.

Deal is praising Handel at an election-eve campaign rally, saying the former Georgia secretary of state's experience should be the difference in the race.

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Handel maintained some distance from Trump in the primary but has fully embraced his support and agenda since, including a joint fundraiser. Total spending in the race topped $56 million, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, a watchdog group, almost double the previous record.

The Congressional Leadership Fund, a super PAC aligned with House GOP leaders, has put $7 million into the race and the NRCC has invested $6.7 million.

While there is a national sentiment of increased Democrat activity, it doesn't always translate in traditionally red districts.

Ms Handel, 55, spent Monday campaigning across the district, and received support from a Donald Trump tweet on Tuesday. Republicans say that even if Ossoff wins, it would be hard to replicate the massive amount of money and outside focus for races during a normal cycle. Ossoff criticized the ad for politicizing "a tragedy that has united the country".

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