Democrat Jon Ossoff blasted an online attack from a Republican group that claimed he was “shamed” into marrying his longtime girlfriend, a physician who has played a key role in his U.S. Senate bid.
Ossoff said Thursday the National Republican Senatorial Committee’s focus on his marriage to Alisha Kramer was a clear sign that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and U.S. Sen. David Perdue were frightened by his campaign.
“Mitch McConnell’s attacks on my wife are outrageous and pathetic,” he said. “McConnell is wasting no time plunging this race into the gutter.”
The attacks were tucked into a parody website of Ossoff’s campaign after Republicans snapped up the JonOssoff.com domain name. Along with jabs at his unsuccessful 2017 run for a U.S. House seat, the website includes a fake LinkedIn-type profile that includes this line:
“Was mocked for embellishig my resume, and eventually shamed into proposing to my girlfriend of 12 years.”
And under a store section, there’s a picture of a “limited edition engagement ring” that’s offered at $13.
The listing said Ossoff was pressured about his “long-term relationship with a girlfriend we are all absolutely certain was real” and that customers who buy it can “get engaged to your own very real girlfriend.”
Ossoff’s critics were fixated on his relationship with Kramer during his 2017 campaign for Georgia’s 6th District, when he raised a record-shattering $30 million but lost to Republican Karen Handel.
The two have dated since high school and lived near Emory University, where she was a third-year medical student, when he launched his campaign for Congress. He frequently cited her need to be close to the university when pressed about why he lived outside the suburban Atlanta district.
She was active throughout the campaign, with her own speaking schedule and canvassing events. She was also a focus of plenty of media attention. In one CNN interview, after Ossoff said he planned to move to the district once Kramer graduates, anchor Alisyn Camerota asked a blunt question.
"So when are you going to marry her?"
"Well, I don't want to give anything away," Ossoff said with a smile. "But I think I can reasonably say that's more of a personal question."
He popped the question in May 2017 – his supporters showered her with congratulatory messages at a stop that weekend – and they were married a few months later.
She’s now an OB-GYN resident in Atlanta who testified against the anti-abortion measure that passed the Legislature this year. Ossoff cited those restrictions, now tied up in a court battle, when he announced his bid for Senate.
He is one of four Democrats competing to challenge Perdue, a former Fortune 500 chief executive with close ties to President Donald Trump.
In a statement, Ossoff drew a line between his wife’s medical career and Republican health care policies and said Democrats would end the “corrupt” GOP majority in the Senate in 2020.
“She defends the right of Georgia’s women to make private health care decisions in consultation with their doctors,” he said. “McConnell and Perdue have voted to strip health insurance from thousands of Georgia women when they need it most, and they are desperate to overturn Roe v. Wade.”
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