Senator Kelly Loeffler (R-GA) has tested positive for coronavirus and will be forced to self-isolate for at least two weeks, a development which could harm her chances of winning a hotly contested runoff election against her Democratic challenger, Raphael Warnock, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution:
“U.S. Sen. Kelly Loeffler’s campaign said Saturday she is self-isolating after she tested positive for the coronavirus and later received an inconclusive result.
Loeffler’s spokesman Stephen Lawson said she took two COVID tests on Friday morning. He said her rapid test results were negative and that she was cleared to attend a pair of events with Vice President Mike Pence. He said she was informed later Friday that a PCR test came back positive and she was retested Saturday morning and the results were inconclusive.”
Loeffler, who was appointed to her Senate seat by Georgia governor Brian Kemp (R), is one of two incumbent Georgia senators who are locked in close races with their Democratic opponents. Sen. David Perdue (R-GA) is being challenged by Jon Ossoff.
The two Georgia Senate seats will determine control of the U.S. Senate. If Warnock and Ossoff win, Democrats would have a 50-50 tie with Republicans. Vice President-Elect Kamala Harris would then be able to break any tie votes, which could prove crucial as President-Elect Joe Biden’s administration attempts to implement its legislative agenda and get cabinet and judicial appointees confirmed.
Though the Loeffler campaign insisted Saturday that the senator “regularly” wears a protective mask, NBC News notes that at the two events with Pence this week, “neither Loeffler nor Pence appeared to be wearing masks.”
— Kelly Loeffler (@KLoeffler) November 20, 2020
The Georgia Senate runoff election is set for January 5, 2021.
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