Runoff in Georgia Senate races would mean big spending
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We’re continuing to watch the ongoing Senate races in Georgia, where it’s looking like there will be at least one runoff race.
The results could end up determining the balance of power in the Senate. That means a lot of campaign money will likely be flowing in Georgia’s direction.
The stakes are so high in Georgia that candidates might raise more money than they can even spend, said Jeffrey Lazarus, political science professor at Georgia State University.
“Several hundred million dollars is a conservative estimate,” he said.
The candidates are likely to use that money to double-down on TV and online advertising, and on voter registration.
“Anytime there’s a runoff in the state of Georgia, it’s all about turnout,” said Scott Ainsworth, a political science professor at the University of Georgia.
He said that’s not easy. Enthusiasm tends to drop in runoff elections. And since many people already support a candidate, there aren’t a lot of undecided voters that campaigns can target.
“Now you’re doing everything you can to persuade them to get registered, to persuade them to turn out,” Ainsworth said. “That’s just a bigger lift.”
He said candidates are likely to focus their advertising and get-out-the-vote efforts on people who voted for third-party candidates in the general election.
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