The Republican vote came roaring back Tuesday in a Georgia special election held for a seat in the Georgia House of Representatives, as the GOP candidate won by 26 percentage points, 63% to 37%.
Republican Devan Seabaugh crushed Democratic Priscilla Smith in the election; in 2020, the Republican candidate, Rep. Bert Reeves, won by only 12%. He left to take a job at Georgia Tech.
“While runoff elections historically have a lower turnout than the previous race, especially in a special election, both races had more voters turn out on Tuesday than they did four weeks ago. Nearly 2,000 more people voted in the Cobb-based House District 34 contest on Tuesday than last month. More than 1,000 additional voters cast ballots on Tuesday than last month in the House District 156 election in South Georgia,” The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported, adding, “Some political operatives at first thought the Cobb County state House district could be an early test for suburban Atlanta Republicans after the state supported Joe Biden for president in November and Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock in January for the U.S. Senate, all Democrats.”
Seabaugh won his decisive victory despite the efforts of former gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams’ voting group Fair Fight. “On the day of the special election in June, Fair Fight posted observers at several polling sites. Heading into the final days of the runoff, Fair Fight released a digital attack on Seabaugh criticizing his support for Georgia’s new restrictive voting measure, gun rights expansions and anti-abortion measures,” the Journal-Constitution noted.
The digital attack ad claimed Seabaugh held “extreme positions on voting rights, reproductive freedom, and common sense gun safety,” adding, “Instead of standing up for women’s fundamental rights, Seabaugh has pledged to support all bills that would eliminate the right to choose ‘without apology.'”
Abrams’ group lauded Smith:
Fair Fight is proud to stand with Priscilla Smith in her race to represent House District 34 in the Georgia House of Representatives. Throughout her life, Priscilla has been a tireless advocate for underrepresented communities from the classroom to the nonprofit sector. In the Georgia House of Representatives, Priscilla will fight to protect our nation’s democracy by working to end voter suppression for Georgians; making election day a national holiday; and expanding vote-by-mail. If elected, Priscilla would work tirelessly for fair districts and an end to gerrymandering. Priscilla’s commitment to fair representation at the ballot box; her commitment to affordable healthcare and reproductive freedom; and her commitment to funding infrastructure and public education is why Fair Fight is proud to support her campaign.
Smith “prowled the halls of the Georgia State Capitol dressed as President Donald Trump,”11 Alive reported in September 2020. Dressed as Trump, Smith told 11 Alive in 2019, “I’m the real Donna J. Trump. I’m not the president; I’m the president’s worst nightmare. … on the other hand, he wakes up in the morning he sees all this beautiful femininity across the room from him; it’s his wildest dream. … I’m a very stable genius. I get a lot of sun. I play a lot of golf. I use a lot of sunscreen but I just tan beautifully naturally. I’ve always been like that. … With all of this, everybody wants a piece of this. So I have to ask you please, keep your hands to yourself. I understand; it’s very tempting. But, you know, lay off.”