Election 2020: Bourdeaux declares victory in District 7 primary

Carolyn Bourdeaux said her campaign is now focused on the general election race against Republican Rich McCormick.

Enough ballots have been counted  in the 7th Congressional District Democratic primary that Carolyn Bourdeaux feels comfortable claiming victory.

Bourdeaux expects to face Republican Rich McCormick, an emergency room physician, in November. However, the election results haven't been certified and there is still a chance Bourdeaux will be forced into a runoff against one of the five other Democrats in the race, most likely state Rep. Brenda Lopez Romero.

Bourdeaux said during a press conference Monday morning that she is now moving her campaign into its next phase.

“This morning, I am pleased to announce that we are beginning our general election campaign,” she said during the video conference. “At this point, it is clear that I will again be the Democratic nominee for Georgia's 7th Congressional District. I am honored to receive the support from so many diverse families from across this district, and I will carry their stories and struggles with me in the days ahead.”

Republicans, who are anxious to hold onto the seat of retiring U.S. Rep. Rob Woodall, have nominated emergency room doctor Rich McCormick. He easily won the GOP primary on Tuesday against six other opponents.

Bourdeaux lost to Woodall in 2018 by less than 500 votes. District 7 includes most of Gwinnett County and southern Forsyth.

Initially, the Associated Press said that a runoff would be needed to settle upon a Democratic nominee this year. As more absentee ballots were counted, however, Bourdeaux's lead grew to more than a majority. She said Monday that about 10,000 votes still need to be counted. The AP said over the weekend that the race is still undecided.

On Sunday, current third-place finisher Nabilah Islam conceded to Bourdeaux and said it is time to focus on defeating McCormick in November.

“We need to flip this district blue and keep it out of the hands of extremists,” Islam said. “Carolyn Bourdeaux will give us a voice that represents us all. It’s very important for all of us to get behind her. I want to make sure she has all the backing she needs in order to cross the finish line.”

In McCormick, Republicans have found a doctor on the front lines treating patients with COVID-19 who also has a military background. McCormick also took traditional party positions, like voicing support for President Donald Trump and pledging to dismantle the Affordable Care Act and crack down on undocumented immigration.

“We need you in Washington, D.C. badly,” Trump said to McCormick in a post on Twitter. “You have my Complete and Total Endorsement!”

McCormick replied: “I am humbled and honored to have your support Mr. President. I am so grateful and blessed to live in this country where hard work and faith are rewarded. The opportunity to serve this nation is the highest calling! I am truly living the American Dream”

Bourdeaux said she pledged to draw policy contrasts with McCormick leading up to their fall showdown, as well as point out his ties to Trump.

“Rich McCormick is supported by a president, whose racist, sexist, anti-immigrant comments and policies are tearing our country apart,” she said. “And he is pushing policies that would dismantle our healthcare system, cut protections for people with pre-existing conditions and ensure that the already staggering numbers of uninsured in this district would continue to skyrocket. And after the last few months, we know that having quality, affordable health care is essential.”

Read more: A running list of results in Georgia federal races

Also: Election 2020: AJC Election results June 9, 2020