Jon Ossoff on runoff against Karen Handel: 'Bring it on'

Democrat Jon Ossoff said his campaign is prepared for a June 20 runoff against Republican Karen Handel, after he fell short of an upset victory Tuesday in the nationally watched special election to represent a suburban Atlanta district in Congress.

Casting his high-40s performance in the vote as a "victory for the ages," Ossoff said he and his supporters "shattered expectations" in the Republican-leaning district.

“So bring it on. Because we are courageous," he said. "We are humble. And we know how to fight.”

That call evoked Handel's 2010 campaign for governor, when she roared "bring it on" at the state GOP convention after a blistering attack ad against one of her top rivals.

The 30-year-old investigative filmmaker aimed for an outright win in the 6th District race, but a furious Republican counterattack joined by President Donald Trump appeared to keep him under 50 percent.

He is set to face Handel, a former Georgia secretary of state who will try to unify Republicans after vicious weeks of internal GOP feuding. Handel expressed confidence Tuesday that Republicans can rally together to thwart the Democrat’s bid.

"Tomorrow, we start the campaign anew," said Handel. "Beating Ossoff and holding this seat is something that rises above any one person."

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About the Author

Greg Bluestein
Greg Bluestein
Greg Bluestein is a political reporter who covers the governor's office and state politics for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.