Liberal Californians are moving from San Francisco to Georgia to help the Democrats win two runoff elections and gain control of the U.S. Senate.
The San Francisco Chronicle documented several efforts from San Franciscans attempting to persuade Georgians to vote according to their political preference in the key election.
Both Senate races in Georgia went to a runoff after no candidate was able to garner 50% of the vote. Republican incumbent David Purdue obtained 49.7% of the vote, and Democrat Jon Ossoff received 48% of the vote. In the other contest, Democrat Raphael Warnock received 32.9% of the vote while the Republican vote was split between incumbent Kelly Loeffler at 25.9% and Doug Collins at 19.9%.
If the Democrats flip the seats, the Senate’s 100 seats will be evenly split between the GOP and Democrats with the deciding vote going to the vice president — and that would be Democrat Kamala Harris assuming Joe Biden takes the presidential oath of office
Manny Yekutiel, who runs a “civic engagement space” in San Francisco’s Mission District, and volunteered in Georgia in the fall says he’s being contacted by friends who want to join him for the runoff effort.
“My phone has been blowing up every 20 minutes,” Yekutiel said.
“People are asking me, ‘When do I move to Georgia? Where can I stay? Should I get a block of hotel rooms?'” he added.
Tech industry project manager Joseph Killian, 38, told the Chronicle that he and his friends donated $50,000 to Democratic senatorial candidates who mostly lost in their bid against Republicans.
“I can’t just sit home and raise money,” said Killian. “When you look at some of those races where we didn’t win, this is our chance to hopefully go there and fix that. We want to be there and help.”
Outside money pours in
Republicans are using the fact that the majority of the campaign funding for both Democrats comes from out of state in order to undermine their campaigns.
“I’ll point to the last time that Jon Ossoff was running for office and received a lot of organizing help from California — it didn’t end well for him,” said Jesse Hunt, a spokesman for the National Republican Senatorial Committee.
At least 83% of the money raised for Ossoff came from outside Georgia, and 80% of the money raised for Warnock came from outside the state.
“These progressive activists who want to come to Georgia, their values are very different from the people in Georgia who will be voting,” said Hunt.
The runoff elections will be held on Jan. 5.