Candidates Gus Makris (from left), Kay Kirkpatrick, Christine Triebsch, and Bob Wiskind participate in a debate for the open state Senate seat that was held by Judson Hill at the East Cobb Library on Wednesday, April 12, 2017, in Marietta. Curtis Compton/ccompton@ajc.com

Democrat, Republican face off Tuesday in runoff for Senate District 32

Although Georgia’s attention has been focused on the northern suburbs’ 6th Congressional District, the area’s other runoff election will be held Tuesday to represent parts of Cobb and Fulton counties in the state Senate.

Democrat Christine Triebsch and Republican Kay Kirkpatrick are facing off a race that has appeared surprisingly competitive, after Triebsch topped an eight-candidate field in the April 18 special election.

The state Senate District 32 seat, however, has been held by a Republican since 1995, and Kirkpatrick has been boosted by the race’s other Republican candidates. Including her, the five GOPers earned a combined 60.2 percent of the vote in April, something Kirkpatrick’s supporters hope bodes well Tuesday.

Triebsch, a family and juvenile attorney, has often tied the contest to Democratic congressional candidate Jon Ossoff’s push to “flip” the northern metro area’s 6th District away from the state’s majority Republican leadership. A political novice, she has said she was “deeply affected” by the results of November’s presidential election and has tried to harness the grassroots energy among liberals that followed.

Kirkpatrick, a retired orthopedic surgeon, has in turn run a more traditional campaign, far out-fundraising Triebsch and tapping into a support network that has included state Reps. Beth Beskin, R-Atlanta, Deborah Silcox, R-Atlanta, and U.S. Health Secretary Tom Price’s wife, state Rep. Elizabeth Price.

Longtime state Sen. Judson Hill, R-Marietta, held the seat since 2005 but resigned to run for Congress. He came in fourth in the 6th District vote on April 18, missing a June 20 runoff.

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