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Raphael Warnock won and Jon Ossoff edged decisively ahead in their respective Georgia runoff races on Wednesday morning, leaving the Democrats on course to secure a majority in the Senate, and Hollywood stars such as Debra Messing, Josh Gad and Billy Eichner didn’t hold back their excitement at the prospective result.
The election pitted Warnock and Jon Ossoff against Republicans Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue in their respective races. By beating Loeffler, Warnock became the first Black senator in his state’s history.
As the results trickled in, Eichner tweeted about how nervous he was feeling. “I told myself yesterday I wouldn’t watch the results come in because it gives me too much anxiety and now I am watching and literally pacing around my apt completely naked except for socks and this mug,” he wrote on Twitter.
Alyssa Milano and Top Chef host Padma Lakshmi were among those who tweeted about the necessity for every vote to be counted. As the final votes came in, comedian Sarah Cooper posted a gif of herself impersonating Donald Trump in a distressed manner, with the caption: “Trump calling into Fox and Friends tomorrow morning.”
A number of Hollywood figures acknowledged Stacey Abrams role in the raising political awareness and urging people to vote in the Georgia runoffs, with Messing tweeting, “Stacey you did it!!!!!!!” and including Abrams own tweet, in which she congratulated Warnock on his Senate appointment. Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez tweeted out “thank you” messages to several organizations that proved to be critical in the last months and weeks, including New Georgia Project and Fair Fight Action. “Thank you to ALL the people and grassroots organizations doing the thankless, often-overlooked, mission-critical work of change,” wrote Cortez.
Josh Gad wrote, “Twitter come and flag it baby! We won both seats tonight and possibly saved Democracy!! Sleep tight!”
The race has garnered attention amid President-elect Joe Biden’s upcoming Jan. 20 inauguration, as the results would deem how much Biden will be able to accomplish at the start of his term and whether there would be a balance of power.
Biden attended a drive-in rally in Atlanta to campaign with Democrats Ossoff and Warnock where he expressed that, “Unlike any time in my career, one state — one state — can chart the course, not just for the four years but for the next generation.” Biden also reiterated that he needed a Senate majority to pass legislation to combat the novel coronavirus. Meanwhile, Vice President Mike Pence and President Donald Trump also campaigned in Georgia ahead of the runoffs for Republicans Perdue and Loeffler.
In the early hours of Wednesday morning on the East Coast, AP projected Warnock winning his race. At 2:14 a.m. E.T., Decision Desk HQ called Ossoff’s race in his favor, although the AP and the cable news networks had yet to call the race.
On Wednesday morning, Abrams took to Twitter amid Ossoff’s lead to say, “In 2017, Georgia’s next U.S. Senator @ossoff confronted a dark chapter in our nation’s story by standing for office. Now Jon Ossoff will stand for all of Georgia in the fight for healthcare, jobs + justice. And our nation will be all the better for having him. Congratulations!”
LeBron James was among the professional athletes celebrating Warnock’s projected victory on Wednesday, with the Los Angeles Lakers superstar and Black Lives Matter advocate even floating the idea to purchase the WNBA’s Atlanta Dream franchise, of which Loeffler is part-owner.
The runoffs arrive after the recent presidential election marked a historical moment for Georgia, given that the known red state turned blue for the first time since 1992. In order to maintain the blue wave, a myriad of stars frequently encouraged voters to take to the polls with high-profile events featuring Hollywood stars also having taken place in recent days ahead of Tuesday’s runoff.
Recently, ActBlue hosted a virtual fundraiser, Get Out the Vote: A Conversation With Jordan Peele, featuring the filmmaker and actor Bradley Whitford, which benefited the Democratic Party of Georgia. Oprah Winfrey partnered with Black Voters Matter for a Zoom call with special guests to discuss the election. Meanwhile, other stars took to social media such as Darren Criss who tweeted that he drove to Georgia to help registered voters visit polls. Kerry Washington also tweeted an invitation that if anyone needed a ride to the polls they should text her. Tyler Perry pledged his support to Warnock and Ossoff on his Instagram, and encouraged everyone to vote: “We have to change what’s happening in the Senate. I want to be sure that all my fellow folks in Georgia get out and vote. This is so important.”
Other stars who have urged voters to support Ossoff and Warnock include Holly Robinson Peete, Amber Tamblyn, Billy Baldwin, Mandy Moore, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Liz Tigelaar, Beau Willimon, Common and more.
Read Tuesday’s reactions to the Georgia runoff results, and more, below.
Thank you Georgia.
Thank you Black voters.
Thank you Latino voters.
Thank you AAPI voters.
When we vote, we win. 🍊🇺🇸 https://t.co/9aEGZIzHLt
— Debra Messing✍🏻 (@DebraMessing) January 6, 2021
— Holly Robinson Peete😷🥰 (@hollyrpeete) January 6, 2021
Thank you to ALL the people and grassroots organizations doing the thankless, often-overlooked, mission-critical work of change.
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) January 6, 2021
Twitter come and flag it baby! We won both seats tonight and possibly saved Democracy!! Sleep tight!
— Josh Gad (@joshgad) January 6, 2021
— OfficialClarkePeters (@clarkepeters) January 6, 2021
John Lewis is smiling down on US.
— Rob Reiner (@robreiner) January 6, 2021
— Leslie Jones 🦋 (@Lesdoggg) January 6, 2021
I’m happy, guys. So happy!
May it all hold!
— yvette nicole brown (@YNB) January 6, 2021
“I’m not optimistic or pessimistic. I’m determined.”
-Stacey Fucking Abrams.
— Bradley Whitford (@BradleyWhitford) January 6, 2021
— Bradley Whitford (@BradleyWhitford) January 6, 2021
Kelly Loeffler is so loyal to Trump she also lost an election in Georgia https://t.co/jRzlORuiJQ
— The Daily Show (@TheDailyShow) January 6, 2021
In one term Trump has taken the GOP from having the presidency, the house, and the Senate to losing all three.
— Jon Cryer (@MrJonCryer) January 6, 2021
In 2017, Georgia’s next U.S. Senator @ossoff confronted a dark chapter in our nation’s story by standing for office. Now Jon Ossoff will stand for all of Georgia in the fight for healthcare, jobs + justice. And our nation will be all the better for having him. Congratulations! pic.twitter.com/dJVHA7MbOV
— Stacey Abrams (@staceyabrams) January 6, 2021
STACEY MOTHER ******* ABRAMS!!!!!!
— Pedro Pascal he/him (@PedroPascal1) January 6, 2021
What Stacey Abrams has done is inestimable and patriotic and heroic!
“Like an old sweet song….”
— Michael Keaton (@MichaelKeaton) January 6, 2021
It's a joy to see, in type, "first Black senator" from Georgia. https://t.co/5iZqQkqwQ4
— Alex Gibney (@alexgibneyfilm) January 6, 2021
Feeling oddly thankful that @staceyabrams had her own election stolen from her so that she had time to save America. So much work still to be done, but this morning I’m just deeply grateful for Stacey & many others who dedicated themselves to the cause of democracy #StaceyMyHero
— Edward Norton (@EdwardNorton) January 6, 2021
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