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Saxby Chambliss Wins In Georgia

This wasn't even close...

ATLANTA (AP) - Georgia Republican Sen. Saxby Chambliss handed the GOP a firewall against Democrats eager to flex their newfound political muscle in Washington, winning a bruising runoff battle Tuesday night that had captured the national limelight.

Chambliss' victory thwarted Democrats' hopes of winning a 60 seat filibuster-proof majority in the Senate. It came after a bitter month long runoff against Democrat Jim Martin that drew political luminaries from both parties to the state and flooded the airwaves with fresh attack ads weeks after campaigns elsewhere had ended.

Minnesota - where a recount is under way - now remains the only unresolved Senate contest in the country. But the stakes there are significantly lower now that Georgia has put a 60-seat Democratic supermajority out of reach.

With 70 percent of the precincts reporting, Chambliss captured 60 percent to Martin's 40 percent. Chambliss' win is a rare bright spot for Republicans in a year where they lost the White House as well as seats in the House and the Senate.

So maybe, just maybe, there's something to the notion that Obama's win was a repudiation of Bush, a rejection of McCain, and a rare Democratic candidate with crossover appeal. Chambliss Obama and Martin each finished with 49% 47% of the vote on Nov. 4 (see below), but in the runoff Martin didn't have Obama's coat tails to ride, putting about where he'd have normally been running as a Democrat in a statewide election in Georgia.

Given the state of the Republican party, one has to take small victories such as this...

November 4 Results

Georgia - U.S. Senate
Candidate Votes     
Saxby Chambliss - R Incumbent  1,865,336 50%  
Jim Martin - D  1,754,383 47%  
Allen Buckley - L  127,822 3%
Georgia - U.S. President
Candidate Votes     
John McCain - R  2,044,870 52%  
Barack Obama - D  1,838,281 47%  
Bob Barr - L  28,727 1%

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Comments (14)

Certainly Obama was an effe... (Below threshold)

Certainly Obama was an effective crossover candidate, however, in this particular congressional race it appears that Republicans have finally voted to take a stand.

I wonder how many voters in this latest election didn't show up to vote in the general? That would be an intersting exit poll question. Surely the Chambliss folks know the answer, but when will the rest of us know?

Martin did not get 49% of t... (Below threshold)
ga:

Martin did not get 49% of the vote in the general election. There was a runoff because the libertarian candidate drew a lot of support from the Chambliss in the general election, since Chambliss has been a little wishy washy on conservative/libertarian issues.

In the two person runoff race there was no way Martin was going to win in GA, even if Obama was in the state every day for the last month.

Runoff elections are always... (Below threshold)

Runoff elections are always a lot more lightly attended than regular elections. Whereas on Nov. 4 my polling place had dozens of machines and lines to use them, today there were half a dozen machines and no waiting.

What happened was that Martin decided to stake his runoff campaign on a presidential candidate who, despite having been elected, lost big in Georgia. Not the brightest strategic decision by any means. What enthusiasm there was for Obama in Georgia was expended on Nov. 4, plain and simple.

Meanwhile, Chambliss rallies featuring Sarah Palin indicate that enthusiasm for her at least remains pretty high down here.

Thanks ga,I got co... (Below threshold)
Kevin Author Profile Page:

Thanks ga,

I got confused, what I meant to say was what I said in the update - Obama and Martin were effectively tied on election day. That didn't do him any good today...

Something for the GOP to ha... (Below threshold)
Ryan:

Something for the GOP to hang their hats on, I suppose. "Although we continue to get our asses handed to us, we managed to win a runoff in Georgia!" Good job Georgia, as much as you and your ilk like to wrap yourselves in the flag and talk about how you "support the troops" with your yellow ribbon magnets on your terrorist-funding SUVs, you managed to come out and push over the top a disgusting, dispicable man who called a triple-amputee Vietnam veteran a "friend of terrorists". Good job.

Let's look at the future. You jerks have Chambliss and Caribou Barbie. We have president-elect Obama, Secretary of State Clinton, at least a 58-42 Senate (pending Minnesota), and an overwhelming 80 seat supermajority in the House.

Arlen Specter and Judd Gregg are toast in the Senate in two more years, and President Obama will get his supermajority in the Senate.

Sarah Palin campaigned for ... (Below threshold)

Sarah Palin campaigned for Chamblis in Georgia. I have to think that helped. She is the biggest star in the GOP at the moment. This win will help keep the democrats from the 60 vote filibuster proof Senate they crave. Hopefully, Frankin will not win against Coleman in Minnesota, but that race is very close.The Intellectual Redneck

Aw. Whatsa matter, Ryan? ... (Below threshold)

Aw. Whatsa matter, Ryan? Not getting that super-majority you wanted to shut us up? The conversation had a decidedly grown-up and serious tenor until you popped in calling people jerks and assigning cutesy names to others. The irony you ignore is that there are some pretty despicable people holding office in Congress and the Senate with a (D) after their name. Don't make me name them.

I'm not surprised that it doesn't bother you to have a heavily one-sided government, despicable personalities and all, and would resort to name calling those who see the inherent problems in it.

Ryan-jp2 calling someone el... (Below threshold)
Greg:

Ryan-jp2 calling someone else jerks? Grow up boy. You are still pathetic.

From a Red County in Illino... (Below threshold)
Pretzel Logic:

From a Red County in Illinois--Thanks GA!

Ryan's upset because he and... (Below threshold)
WildWillie:

Ryan's upset because he and his ilk said the conservative movement is dead. Also, I be there will be plenty of democrats losing their seats in 2010. Just the way it works. ww

Reality check time: First,... (Below threshold)

Reality check time: First, once the "spoilers" were out of the race, Chambliss was an easy victor. Second, even this small victory will not dilute or diminish the hubris of the Dems and the spinelessness still being displayed by the Republican Congressional delegation. I've seen overcooked fettuccine with more spine!

We have about 18 months to find and position really worthwhile candidates for the House in EVERY state in this Union and mount a campaign to replace the wimps with some worthwhile candidates. Allez vous en!

Might this be the moment th... (Below threshold)

Might this be the moment the pendulum begins to swing back to the right?

"...in two more years, a... (Below threshold)
John S:

"...in two more years, and President Obama will get his supermajority in the Senate."

You seem to have forgotten the $4 trillion budget deficit, hyperinflation, and 50 million unemployed by then. And there's that radioactive terrorist attack in Los Angeles.

November 4, 2008 was the Democrats' high water mark.

Maybe he's forgotten those ... (Below threshold)
Bruce Henry:

Maybe he's forgotten those things because they HAVEN'T HAPPENED, and probably won't.
Do you WISH for those calamities to happen to our country so that sleazeballs like Chambliss and, shall we say, "non-intellectuals" like Palin can come to power?
How patriotic.




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