Democrats win control of U.S. Senate

Democrats won control of the U.S. Senate following two runoff elections in Georgia on January 5. Jon Ossoff (D) defeated David Perdue (R) in the regular runoff election. Raphael Warnock defeated Kelly Loeffler (R) in the special runoff election.

As of 5 p.m. Wednesday, Ossoff had 50.3% of the vote to Perdue’s 49.7%. Perdue was elected in 2014, and his term ended on January 3, 2021. 

In the special election, Warnock had 50.7% of the vote to Loeffler’s 49.3%. Gov. Brian Kemp (R) appointed Loeffler after Johnny Isakson (R) resigned at the end of 2019 for health reasons. Warnock will serve the remaining two years of the term Isakson won in 2016.

Once sworn in after runoff results are certified, Ossoff and Warnock will bring the Democratic caucus to 50 members, splitting the chamber with 50 Republicans. The vice president—Kamala Harris (D) as of January 20, 2021—has the tie-breaking vote in the chamber. Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (R) has until January 22 to certify runoff results.

Democrats last controlled the Senate from 2007 to 2015. Democrats currently hold a majority of 222-211 in the U.S. House.

Additional reading: