Why is the 6th District race getting national attention?

We're less than a week from the special election for Georgia's 6th District.

ROSWELL, Ga. -- The special election for Georgia’s 6th District is gaining increased attention as the big day officially nears.

The district covers a diverse swath of metro Atlanta that includes cities like Roswell, Milton, Chamblee, Doraville and Tucker. But this fraction of the region has become, for many, a political litmus test for the whole country. In that way, it has become about seemingly everything but this district.

RACE TO REPLACE TOM PRICE | Where the race stands with one week to go

Last week 11Alive reported on how Democrat Jon Ossoff has raised $8.3 million. That's nearly twice as much as the rest of the 18-person field. And nearly all that money came from donations through a left-leaning non-profit based outside of Georgia.

But millions have also come from Republican Political Action Committees (PACs), mailing fliers and buying time for anti-Ossoff ads.

Those ads include lines like, "Republicans need your help to depend our values” and “liberal Jon Ossoff: He's with Pelosi, not us."

The “us-versus-them” theme has come through several ads from the candidates.

"Dan's one of us," one ad states.

RELATED: Exclusive 11Alive poll has Democrat Ossoff dominating GOP stronghold

Nationally, the focus is not the district but Democrats and Republicans and whether Ossoff can "flip the sixth" as a referendum on Donald Trump.

So what makes the 6th District so pivotal? For nearly four decades, it has been represented by a Republican. Newt Gingrich held the seat for 20 years, Johnny Isakson for 6 years and Tom Price for the last 12 years.

But the margin of victory has been closing. From 80 percent of the vote versus 20 percent in 2002 to barely 60 versus 40 in 2016.

Also in 2016, Donald trump won the presidency. However, he has sparked controversies and protests since taking office. He also took Tom Price from his seat in the 6th District to oversee health care.

That leaves an open seat - and the Democrats' first chance to make a statement electorally. All the attention has certainly had an effect at the voting booths. More than 32,000 6th District residents have voted early and only six days are left before election day.

Most of the early voting is in Fulton County more than $18,000 have already voted. Cobb is second, followed by Dekalb. Early voting ends Friday.

PHOTOS: 6th district congressional debate

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