Optimus Consulting, a Republican data-analytics firm that has been observing the Georgia special election, reported that as much as 8 to 10 percent of Georgia Republicans in the 6th District defected to vote for Jon Ossoff in the April 18th jungle primary.
Alex Alduncin, an analyst with Optimus, said, “Based on the final results of the jungle primary, most independents and a small but relatively sizable portion of Republicans voted for Jon Ossoff.”
Not only has Ossoff, a documentary filmmaker and former congressional aide, garnered national attention for high voter turnout and record-breaking donations to his campaign, but he “has also quietly attracted a small but potentially pivotal share of Republican support in his special election race,” according to Politico.
Considering Ossoff advanced to the June 20th runoff with 48.1 percent of the vote, that slice of Republican voters is extremely significant. Other democrats and independents in the race comprised another full percentage point, putting Ossoff within less than one percent of a dead heat for the seat.
The special election in Georgia is a referendum on an exceedingly unpopular Trump presidency. The seat was previously occupied by Tom Price, whom Trump selected as his cabinet’s Health and Human Services Secretary. With Trump’s approval rating hovering near an abysmal 40 percent, even Republican voters are crossing the aisle to signal their dissatisfaction with the embattled President.
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Brian Tyler Cohen is a political writer, actor, and comedy sketch director. He graduated from Lehigh University with a dual degree in English and Business. He currently lives in Los Angeles.