Words by: Miss Wright
President-Elect Joe Biden and Vice-President-Elect Kamala Harris are in office but it doesn’t quite stop there. There’s a senate race taking place in Georgia right now and its results will impact you more than you think.
Incumbent Republican candidates Senator Kelly Loeffler and Senator David Perdue are fighting for the last two seats in the U.S. senate. Their challengers, Democratic candidates Reverend Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff, have the potential to change the standard for political powers in Georgia.
The current state of the U.S. Senate is majority Republican and it has been since 2014. If either Loeffler or Perdue wins this runoff election, the Senate will remain this way. Meaning, it will be increasingly difficult for President-elect Biden to move forward with much of his legislative agenda.
The most effective way to help Biden show us why we elected him the next President of the United States is to achieve Democratic control within The Senate. That can happen if Georgians get out and vote for Warnock and Ossoff today!
So far, we’ve seen that voters are on the right track when it comes to mail-in ballots and early voting. The Republican candidates were shook to see that for this election, early voting ended with a record of 3 million votes that according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution we’re cast in a group that leans Democratic.
While this is a huge step in the right direction, it is important to keep this same energy going into the polls today. Historically, Republicans have been able to pull through on-site but we changed that narrative back in November when Biden won the traditionally Republican Peach State, so there’s no doubt that it can be achieved again.
The Democratic vote in Georgia is good for more than simply political control of the Senate, as both Ossoff and Warnock display great candidacy for their own unique and integral reasons. When we consider the issues that disproportionately affect our communities, such as mass incarceration, affordable healthcare, rights for the working people, and more, Ossoff and Warnock are allies.
We cannot expect to see change if we are not willing to make it happen and getting out to vote for these candidates will show that we are. If elected, Ossoff would be the youngest member of the Senate at only 33 years old. A younger face like Ossoff in the Senate could produce some new and innovative thinking on issues like clean energy, rebuilding the economy, and more.
As for Warnock, a vote for him would make history. If elected, Reverend Warnock would be the first Black Senator of Georgia and the 11th of the nation. He is more than a potential political figure, but rather a relatable candidate for many Georgians.
Raised in Kayton Homes public housing of Savannah, Warnock experienced firsthand what many Georgia residents experience every day: hardworking family, short on money, desperate to change the standard of living for him and his family.
Warnock went on to follow in his father’s footsteps, becoming a WWII vet and after achieving his PhD. from Morehouse College, becoming a minister. For the last 15 years, Warnock has served as the Senior Pastor of Atlanta’s Ebenezer Baptist Church; once pastored by Martin Luther King Jr.
In contrast to that of Loeffler and Perdue, Warnock’s background is relatable for lots of GA residents. This instills confidence that he will get in office and do what he can for others because he’s been in our shoes. “If you elect me to the Senate, I’ll wake up everyday, guided by the values of hard work and passion instilled in me by my parents and inspired by the words of Dr. King who said that “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘what are you doing for others?’” Even in these crazy times, I still think it’s possible to work together to improve the lives of Georgians. All Georgians,” said Warnock in a recent campaign.
Loeffler and Perdue are two of the Senate’s richest members, both with backgrounds in business and owning extremely lucrative companies. Beyond simply Republican and Democratic, consider which candidates most genuinely have YOUR best interest in mind and WHY.
If you are a person of color reading this article, know that it is impossible for Loeffler to have your best interest in mind. How? Because she’s made blatant comments about her opposition to the Black Lives Matter movement because she thinks it has, “promoted violence and destruction across the country,” and it has called for the, “…disruption of the nuclear family structure…”
What about Breonna Taylor’s family? What about George Floyd’s? What if it happened to you? Again, ask yourself if the candidate you’re voting for genuinely cares about you and the community you represent. Remember, no vote is a vote in the opposite direction and it will become clear as day why voting today is so imperative.
Still don’t think this election is that deep? It’s deep enough to have accumulated a record-breaking $200 million in donations for the Democratic party. It’s deep enough to have gained support from some of our nation’s most influential people such as Barack and Michelle Obama. Celebrities too! Drive-in concerts, campaign events, rallies, and more have featured some of your favorites like Rick Ross, Kerry Washington, Monica, T.I., Reginae Carter, Billie Eilish, and more!
The most important reason Georgians should vote today is because our vote is our power. When we vote, we are making our voices heard. Don’t silence yourself, get out and vote today.