Georgia special election stokes raw emotions in final stretch

One of the most expensive and highly publicized congressional races in U.S. history is reaching its conclusion, with voters in Georgia’s 6th Congressional District heading to the polls today to choose someone to fill Secretary of Health and Human Services Tom Price’s vacant House seat. The field was narrowed to two candidates — Republican Karen Handel and Democrat Jon Ossoff — after a vote in April.

Though the district has not had a Democratic representative since 1979, supporters of Ossoff, a 30-year-old first-time candidate, are hoping he can build on the momentum of Hillary Clinton‘s near miss in the district in November. Observers widely view Tuesday’s election as a referendum on President Donald Trump‘s first five months in office.

In addition to Ossoff’s youth and relative inexperience, health care and campaign finance reform have become major issues in the district.

Here’s a look at the storylines in the final day of the campaign:

Ossoff keeps his cool as pressure builds

After Ossoff finished strong in April’s special election and fell just short of the 50 percent threshold needed to win the seat outright and avoid a runoff, Democrats saw a real opening and poured in money and resources to help him see the race through.

After their surprising defeat in the presidential contest last November, Democrats have been looking for a win and have been arguing about the best way to appeal to voters. Win or lose, some Democrats will try to spin Ossoff’s race as model for what may or may not work across the county.

Despite his age, he has maintained his composure and stayed on message even under the intensity of the national spotlight.

“For all the attention to the national frame here, what folks want is representation that delivers a higher quality of life,” said Ossoff. “This gridlock, dysfunction, scandal in Washington doesn’t.”

With criticism of the president building among Democrats, he noticeably steers away from about questions about Trump and,…

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