Georgia Senate District 13 special election headed to a runoff

A special general election was held on February 4, 2020, to fill the Georgia Senate District 13 seat left vacant by former Senator Greg Kirk (R). The special election was called after Senator Kirk passed away on December 22, 2019. He had represented District 13 since 2015.

Three candidates appeared on the ballot in the special election: Carden Summers (R), Jim Quinn (R), and Mary Egler (D). Summers led the field with 5,154 votes (43.10%), followed by Quinn with 5,044 votes (42.18%), and Egler with 1,759 votes (14.71%). Because no candidate received a majority of the vote, Summers and Quinn, as the top two vote-getters, advanced to a runoff election scheduled for March 3, 2020. The winner of the runoff will serve out the remainder of Senator Kirk’s term, which ends January 10, 2021. Members of the Georgia State Senate serve two-year terms and are not subject to term limits.

As of February 2020, 28 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 was one of 21 Republican state government trifectas at the start of 2020 legislative sessions. A state government trifecta occurs when one political party holds the governor’s office, a majority in the state Senate, and a majority in the state House.

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