Nashville TN (TN Tribune) Republican Sen. Kelly Loeffler of Georgia and her Democratic challenger Rev. Raphael Warnock have both accepted an invitation to participate in a December 6 debate, hosted by the Atlanta Press Club.
Stephen Lawson, Loeffler’s campaign spokesman, confirmed to CNN Tuesday that the Georgia senator has accepted the invitation. CNN previously reported that Warnock had tentatively accepted an invitation to debate. Loeffler’s participation was first reported by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. The Atlanta Press Club confirms both Loeffler and Warnock have agreed to the December 6 debate.
Loeffler is one of two GOP senators in runoff for their seats in Georgia — the other, Sen. David Perdue, has declined an invitation to debate. This weekend, the APC announced that Democratic challenger Jon Ossoff would instead debate an empty podium.
Both Georgia’s Senate seats are in play after neither Perdue nor Loeffler were able to command 50% of the vote on the November 3 General Election, prompting a runoff scheduled for January 5. The race has drawn national attention, with Republican strategist Karl Rove leading a joint fundraising committee with honorary co-chairs Chris Christie, Nikki Haley and Dan Quayle.
If Republicans lose both seats, it would cost them the Senate Majority, and would allow Vice President-elect Kamala Harris to break any possible legislative ties in favor of Democrats. Loeffler said last week Wednesday that if she and Perdue win, they will “save the country.”
Both Perdue and Loeffler have also found themselves in the tenuous position of campaigning amid the backdrop of President Donald Trump’s continued refusal to acknowledge his own November 3 loss. Last week, both issued a joint statement calling on Georgia’s Republican secretary of state, Brad Raffensperger, to resign, writing, “Georgians are outraged, and rightly so. We have been clear from the beginning: every legal vote cast should be counted. Any illegal vote must not,” mirroring false claims from Trump’s campaign and the President himself. Raffensperger said he would not step down.