ROSWELL, Ga. (AP) — Republican Karen Handel and Democrat Jon Ossoff are making their final arguments in the Georgia 6th Congressional District race that offers a potential preview of the 2018 midterm elections.
Handel used an election-eve rally to urge suburban Atlanta Republicans not to be wowed by the attention — and millions of dollars — showered on this House special election.
“We cannot let up. There is too much at stake,” Handel said, acknowledging the white hot spotlight on a contest that has become a proxy for national politics and a test for the GOP early in Donald Trump’s presidency.
Across town, an even more boisterous crowd dominated by millennials chanted “Flip the 6th! Flip the 6th!” as the 30-year-old Ossoff took the microphone.
A former congressional staffer making his first bid for public office, Ossoff has spent the monthslong campaign bouncing between excited Democrats eager to topple Trump and the independents and moderates who are unhappy with Washington yet wary about voting for a Democrat.
On the final night before voting, though, he played to the base.
“Politics does not have to be about fear and hate and deception and division,” he said, avoiding mentioning President Donald Trump directly, as is his custom, but blistering “those cynics in Washington, D.C.”
Then he offered a list of priorities sure to rouse any liberal.
“Together we are going to stand up for the rights of women … for science, clean air and clean water and a climate we can live in,” he said, adding “civil rights and voting rights” and “the LGBT community here in Georgia.”
A gaggle of national and foreign media looked on at both rallies, a testament to how a single congressional seat has become a dominant story in U.S. politics.
Spending in the race could top $50 million, making it the most expensive House contest in U.S. history. Democrats see an opportunity to pick up a seat represented by Republicans since 1979, most recently by the man who now serves as Trump’s Health and…