The final two races of the 2020 federal election cycle were officially certified on Tuesday, with Democrats Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff declared the official winners of their respective U.S. Senate races against Republican incumbents Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue in Georgia.
Both Loeffler and Perdue had conceded their races to Warnock and Ossoff earlier this month, but the certification makes the results official, as recognized by Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, himself a Republican.
Raffensperger issued a statement, broadly declaring that all state and federal races were deemed official as of Tuesday.
“In certifying the results, the Secretary of State affirmed that all 159 counties have provided to the state the total votes tabulated for each state and federal candidate,” Raffensperger said in a statement. “Further, the Secretary of State affirms that the statewide consolidated returns for state and federal offices are a true and correct tabulation of the certified returns received by this office from each county.”
The paperwork now goes to Gov. Brian Kemp, who will finalize it before submitting the results to the U.S. Senate. After that step, Warnock and Ossoff will be allowed to be sworn in, an action that is likely to take place on Wednesday.
Warnock’s and Ossoff’s slim electoral wins ensured that Democrats and Republicans would have a 50-50 tie in the Senate. With Joe Biden set to become the next president on Wednesday, however, Vice President-elect Kamala Harris would act as the tie-breaking vote in her constitutional role as president of the Senate, granting Democrats control of the “upper chamber” of Congress.
The results of the two races have been contested by current President Donald Trump, who, as with his own election loss in Georgia, has made baseless claims that Ossoff and Warnock were only able to win through fraudulent means.
“They just happened to find 50,000 ballots late” on the runoff election night, Trump said in a tweet earlier this month. “The USA is embarrassed by fools. Our Election Process is worse than that of third world countries!”
There’s no evidence of fraud of any kind taking place in Georgia’s elections, neither in the Senate runoff races or in Trump’s loss to Biden in the general election back in November.
Claims of election fraud in Georgia have been widely rejected, including by members of Trump’s own political party. There’s ample evidence, in fact, that demonstrates the elections were fair and free from fraud of any kind that would have affected the outcomes of the races.
When Georgia federal prosecutor Byung J. Pak refused to investigate his baseless claims of fraud earlier this month, Trump forced him to resign. But the new acting attorney installed by Trump also refused to back his unsubstantiated claims of election fraud.
“I would love to stand out on the street corner and scream this, and I can’t,” Bobby Christine reportedly said to staffers according to a recording of that call.