ATLANTA — Joe Biden’s return to Georgia on Tuesday is another example of the state’s importance in this year’s Presidential race.
Last week, President Donald Trump’s son Donald Trump Jr., visited Georgia on the same day Vice Presidential candidate Kamala Harris came to the state representing the Biden campaign. The campaigns have spent in excess of 10-million dollars in advertising in this state, far more than the amount spent here in 2016.
“Georgia is more important this time around because the race looks competitive,” says Emory Political Science Professor Andra Gillespie.
Georgia has sided with the Republican candidate for President in every election since 1992. George W. Bush carried the state by 16% in 2004.
Donald Trump’s 2016 victory was by about 5%.
“The trends are moving toward Democrats,” says University of Georgia Political Science Professor Dr. Charles Bullock. “It doesn’t necessarily mean they triumph, but it gives Democrats encouragement.”
The polls have consistently projected a close race here.
“What we’re expecting is that this race is going to be decided by a few hundred thousand votes at best if not less,” says Gillespie.
The Electoral College will ultimately decide the race. Georgia’s has sixteen electors, more than all but seven other states.
“Republicans for the last couple of decades have relied on Georgia providing 16 electoral college votes,” says Gillespie. “Losing that would be a blow, especially if it’s not offset by gains in other states.”
Since Bill Clinton took the state in 1992, the closest a Democrat has come to winning Georgia was Clinton four years later when Republican Bob Dole’s margin of victory here was less than 2%.