A special general election is scheduled for January 28 for District 171 of the Georgia House of Representatives. The seat became vacant on November 25, 2019, after Jay Powell (R) passed away. A runoff election, if necessary because no candidate secures a majority of the vote, is scheduled for February 25, 2020.
Jewell Howard (D), Tommy Akridge (R), and Joe Campbell (R) are competing in the special election. Powell was first elected to District 71 in 2008. He was unopposed in his 2014, 2016, and 2018 re-election bids. In 2012, Powell faced opposition from Jewell Howard (D). He defeated Howard with 59% of the vote.
Republicans have a 104-74 majority with two vacancies in the state House. Georgia has a Republican trifecta. A state government trifecta exists when one political party simultaneously holds the governor’s office and both state legislative chambers.
As of January, 27 state legislative special elections have been scheduled for 2020 in 13 states. Between 2011 and 2019, an average of 77 special elections took place each year. Georgia will also hold a special election on February 4, 2020, to fill a vacant seat in the state Senate.
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