What Happened in Georgia

Adam Martin
The Book Aisle
Published in
19 min readMar 3, 2021

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This is the final part in my series on the swing states from the 2020 presidential election. Of all the states from this past election, Georgia has received the most attention due to its outcome and its possible implications for the Democratic Party. We’ll explore that question as we move through this post, but with all that said, let’s dive in.

Big Picture

Joe Biden- 2,473,633 (49.50 percent, up 4.15 from Clinton in 2016)

Donald Trump- 2,461,854 (49.26 percent, down 1.18 from 2016)

FiveThirtyEight Projection- 50.1 for Biden (up 1.60), 49.2 for Trump (down 0.06)

RCP Average- 47.2 for Biden (down 2.30), 48.2 for Trump (down 1.06)

In many ways, Georgia is like North Carolina. Both are fast-growing Southern states, each with its own hot spots for that growth. For North Carolina, it’s Charlotte and the Research Triangle. For Georgia, it’s mainly Atlanta and its sprawling suburbs. With these developments, many have made assessments on the state’s political future. “Demographic change” is a term often thrown into this discussion. While the state already has a large black population, the infusion of college-educated, metropolitan residents furthered the prospect of the state turning blue.

After multiple days of counting (and recounting), Biden prevailed, winning the state by less than 15,000 votes, a razor-thin margin for a state where almost 5 million ballots were cast. Biden became the first Democrat since Bill Clinton to carry Georgia, a fairly impressive feat in its own right. Much of that came from increased Democrat turnout in the aforementioned Atlanta metropolitan area. While the city itself has long been a Democratic stronghold, this election saw major media coverage dedicated to Biden’s ability to tap into the state’s vast suburban electorate through playing into anti-Trump sentiment in these communities. While this wasn’t the only tactic implemented to winning the state, it was certainly the most critical.

As of Election Day, there have been 347,473 COVID cases in Georgia, the sixth highest of any state. This makes sense, given that Georgia is the eighth largest state by population; however, the incidence rate is 3.3 percent, which ranks 20th among the states. On the other hand, there have been 7,831 deaths as of Election Day, ranking ninth highest among the states, and the fatality rate of 2.3 percent ranks 18th among the states. And economically, the impact has been fairly consistent with the rest of the country, with the unemployment rate going from 4.5 percent in March to 12.2 percent in April (a 7.7-point increase that ranks 32nd among the states). So overall, while the impact of the pandemic in Georgia may seem large based on raw numbers, it’s actually more modest relative to its population.

As of Election Day, there have been 401 BLM protests in Georgia, ranking 15th among the states. Considering the state’s geography and demographics, they may actually seem a bit lower than expected. Georgia has the third largest black population in the country by raw numbers and fourth largest by percentage of the total population (third if you exclude the District of Columbia), the eleventh most college graduates (but only 25th by percentage), and the eighth largest young adult population (and 12th by percentage). Furthermore, the state has multiple urban centers (Atlanta, Augusta, Columbus, Savannah) as well as several notable college towns (Athens) that could serve as hubs for protest activity. But similar to North Carolina, Georgia also has wide swaths of rural area, where a significant chunk of the state’s population resides, that are far less amenable to such protest activity. Still, the number of protests isn’t exceptionally low either.

As for the exit polls, Biden retained 96 percent of Clinton voters from 2016 while picking up 70 percent of third-party voters and 51 percent of those that did not vote in 2016. Conversely, President Trump only retained 94 percent of his 2016 voters, 22 percent of third-party voters and 46 percent of non-voters from four years ago.

As for race, Biden won 88 percent of black voters (slightly down from 89 percent in 2016), as well as 62 percent of Hispanic voters (also down from Clinton’s performance). On the other hand, Biden only won 30 percent of white voters (although this is significantly up from the 21 percent Clinton got in 2016). Meanwhile, President Trump ran away with 69 percent of white voters (although this down from 75 percent four years ago).

As for educational attainment, Biden won 57 percent of college graduates and 44 percent of white college graduates, both of which are significant improvements from Clinton’s 2016 performance and a reflection of his success in the Atlanta metropolitan area. But ultimately, Trump carried 54 percent of voters without a college degree as well as 79 percent of white voters without a college degree, both of which are largely consistent with his 2016 performance. Overall, this shows a considerably wider education gap in Georgia compared to four years ago, both at the aggregate level as well as broken down by race.

As for age, Biden actually underperformed Clinton among 18–29 voters, winning just 56 percent of them (compared to Clinton’s performance of 63 percent), and winning 54 percent of voters in the 30–44 bracket (up from 51 percent for Clinton). And although Trump still won 53 percent of voters in the 45–64 bracket and 56 percent of voters over 65, these margins are slightly smaller than what he received in 2016 (especially with voters over 65. To that end, Biden made some improvements with older voters.

Geographically, Biden won 67 percent of urban voters, compared to 68 percent from Clinton. While Biden did make slight improvements with suburban voters, President Trump still won this group with 51 percent, which matches his own 2016 performance. Trump also won 69 percent of rural voters, two percent better that he received four years ago. So overall, this election exacerbated Georgia’s urban-rural divide. While Trump kept his margins from 2016 in the suburban and rural areas, Biden held strong in the urban areas.

Socioeconomically, 44 percent of Georgia voters said their family’s financial situation is better than what it was four years ago (compared to 41 percent nationwide), of which 78 percent voted for President Trump. Meanwhile, 16 percent said their family’s financial situation is worse than what it was four years ago (the same as the rest of the country), of which 84 percent voted for Joe Biden. And 38 percent said their family’s financial situation is the same as what it was four years (compared to 39 percent nationwide), of which 73 percent voted for Biden. Regarding income brackets, Biden won 56 percent of voters making less than $50,000. But although Trump won 53 percent voters in the $50,000-$99,999 bracket, Biden prevailed among voters making over $100,000, winning 53 percent of that group.

When asked about their most important issue, 36 percent of Georgia voters said the economy (compared to 35 percent nationwide), of which 87 percent voted for President Trump. Meanwhile, 14 percent said the pandemic was the most important issue and 21 percent said racial inequality, of which 89 percent and 90 percent voted for Biden respectively. And when asked what was more important to accomplish, 51 percent prioritized containing the virus, of which 83 percent voted for Biden. On the other hand, 44 percent prioritized reopening the economy, of which 83 percent voted for Trump.

Now that we’ve gone over the exit polls, let’s run some regressions. First, here are various regression results for Biden’s county-level vote share.

For the most part, nothing is out of the ordinary with Georgia. While the COVID incidence rate is negatively associated with Biden’s vote share, the unemployment increase from March to April is positively associated, indicating that Biden performed better in areas that took the brunt of the economic effects more so than those that were hit by major outbreaks. Furthermore, the number of protests is not statistically significant.

Aside from this, nothing too exceptional emerges with demographic factors. Most particularly, the education gap remains persistent in Georgia, with the more highly educated counties voting more for Biden and the less highly educated counties siding more with President Trump.

Now, let’s look at the regression models for the Democratic vote share change between 2016 and 2020.

For the most part, these regressions reinforce the trends seen in Figure 1, with the education gap widening even further from its 2016 level. Aside from this, however, nothing too extraordinary emerges from these regression results.

So with all this established, let’s dive into each of the subsections for Georgia.

Solidly Democratic Counties

Bibb- Biden Hold

Biden- 43,468 (61.39 percent, up 2.32), Trump- 26,585 (37.55 percent, down 1.06)

Calhoun- Biden Hold

Biden- 1,260 (57.43 percent, down 0.79), Trump- 923 (42.07 percent, up 1.08)

Chatham- Biden Hold

Biden- 78,254 (58.65 percent, up 2.78), Trump- 53,237 (39.90 percent, down 1.08)

Clarke- Biden Hold

Biden- 36,048 (70.22 percent, up 3.46), Trump- 14,446 (28.14 percent, down 0.54)

Clayton- Biden Hold

Biden- 95,476 (84.99 percent, up 0.43), Trump- 15,813 (14.08 percent, up 0.41)

DeKalb- Biden Hold

Biden- 308,227 (83.12 percent, up 2.69), Trump- 58,373 (15.74 percent, down 0.73)

Dougherty- Biden Hold

Biden- 24,577 (69.60 percent, up 1.08), Trump- 10,454 (29.61 percent, down 0.47)

Fulton- Biden Hold

Biden- 381,144 (72.65 percent, up 3.66), Trump- 137,240 (26.16 percent, down 1.20)

Hancock- Biden Hold

Biden- 2,985 (71.67 percent, down 3.78), Trump- 1,159 (27.83 percent, up 4.28)

Liberty- Biden Hold

Biden- 13,099 (61.24 percent, up 1.95), Trump- 7,959 (37.21 percent, down 0.85)

Macon- Biden Hold

Biden- 2,857 (61.28 percent, down 1.82), Trump- 1,783 (38.25 percent, up 2.32)

Muscogee- Biden Hold

Biden- 49,529 (61.49 percent, up 3.45), Trump- 30,049 (37.31 percent, down 1.98)

Randolph- Biden Hold

Biden- 1,671 (54.36 percent, down 0.80), Trump- 1,391 (45.25 percent, up 1.38)

Richmond- Biden Hold

Biden- 59,124 (67.95 percent, up 2.94), Trump- 26,781 (30.78 percent, down 1.80)

Rockdale- Biden Hold

Biden- 31,244 (69.92 percent, up 8.16), Trump- 13,012 (29.12 percent, down 6.67)

Stewart- Biden Hold

Biden- 1,182 (59.40 percent, down 0.07), Trump- 801 (40.25 percent, up 1.08)

Talbot- Biden Hold

Biden- 2,114 (60.02 percent, down 1.69), Trump- 1,392 (39.52 percent, up 2.65)

Taliaferro- Biden Hold

Biden- 561 (60.45 percent, down 0.31), Trump- 360 (38.79 percent, down 0.11)

Warren- Biden Hold

Biden- 1,469 (55.41 percent, down 0.91), Trump- 1,166 (43.98 percent, up 1.51)

There are the nineteen solidly Democratic counties in Georgia. In 2016, Clinton won this subsection with 69.9 percent of the vote, which was an improvement from the 68 percent President Obama won in 2012 and a net gain of 44,691 votes. This time around, Biden continued to expand his support in this subsection, winning all fifteen counties 72.9 percent of the vote and a net gain of 220,915 votes over Clinton’s total.

First, we should acknowledge the gains in Atlanta and the surrounding area. Improvements in Fulton, DeKalb, and Rockdale were substantial, reaching 3.7 points, 2.7 points, and 8.2 points respectively. Regarding raw numbers, Fulton and DeKalb alone account for over half of Biden’s vote share in the subsection. And considering that Clinton’s vote share in these counties was already quite high, with just under 70 percent in Fulton and just over 80 percent in DeKalb, these improvements are pretty impressive.

But for this subsection at least, the story shouldn’t focus solely on the Atlanta metropolitan area. Biden also made small, but critical improvements in the counties with medium-sized cities. One such county is Chatham, home to the port city of Savannah, where Biden added 2.8 percent to Clinton’s vote share and netted an additional 15,964 votes from her total. In Richmond, home to Augusta, Biden added 2.9 percent to Clinton’s vote share and netted 10,310 votes from her total. In Muscogee, home to the city of Columbus, Biden added 3.5 percent to Clinton’s vote share and netted an additional 9,678 votes from her total. Not to say that Biden didn’t also benefit from boosts in the Atlanta metropolitan area, but considering that Biden carried the state by under 15,000 votes, these gains in medium-sized cities paid off at the margins.

As of Election Day, there have been 108,306 COVID cases in this subsection, setting the incidence rate at 3.2 percent (slightly below the state average). While about half of these cases emerged in Fulton and DeKalb, the case load is distributed fairly wide in this subsection, with many of the smaller counties also taking on a notable caseload. Still, with the exception of Stewart (at 8.6 percent), the incidence rate generally sticks pretty close to the rest of the subsection. On the other hand, there have been 2,399 deaths in this subsection, setting the fatality rate at 2.2 percent (the same as the state average). Regarding timing, there was a massive spike in cases from the early months to the summer months. And while the cases in the early fall months were not as high, they were still considerably higher than those from the spring. And for unemployment, the impact is similar to that of the rest of the state, going from about 5 percent in March to 13.7 percent in April.

Finally, as of Election Day, there have been 229 BLM protests in this subsection, with 103 of them occurring in Fulton, 30 occurring in Clarke, 24 in DeKalb, and 23 in Chatham. This makes sense given that the subsection is majority black, with many of these residents living in the cities, which are naturally prone to increased protest activity. On that note, the subsection includes both Atlanta and multiple medium-sized cities, each with the capacity to handle protest activity. Finally, there are considerable pockets of college-educated voters and young adults in this subsection, most notably in Fulton and Clarke (which is home to the University of Georgia).

Swing Counties

Baker- Trump Hold

Biden- 652 (41.93 percent, down 3.21), Trump- 897 (57.68 percent, up 3.87)

Baldwin- Biden Hold

Biden- 9,140 (50.08 percent, up 0.53), Trump- 8,903 (48.78 percent, up 0.93)

Burke- Trump Flip

Biden- 5,209 (48.76 percent, down 1.84), Trump- 5,400 (50.54 percent, up 2.52)

Clay- Biden Hold

Biden- 790 (55.09 percent, up 0.25), Trump- 637 (44.42 percent, down 0.11)

Cobb- Biden Hold

Biden- 221,846 (56.34 percent, up 7.45), Trump- 165,459 (42.02 percent, down 4.67)

Dooly- Trump Hold

Biden- 1,911 (46.55 percent, down 1.96), Trump- 2,159 (52.59 percent, up 2.04)

Douglas- Biden Hold

Biden- 42,809 (61.95 percent, up 7.95), Trump- 25,451 (36.83 percent, down 6.39)

Early- Trump Hold

Biden- 2,437 (46.98 percent, up 1.67), Trump- 2,722 (52.48 percent, down 0.86)

Gwinnett- Biden Hold

Biden- 241,827 (58.43 percent, up 7.41), Trump- 166,413 (40.21 percent, down 4.93)

Henry- Biden Hold

Biden- 73,276 (59.70 percent, up 8.77), Trump- 48,187 (39.26 percent, down 7.26)

Jefferson- Biden Hold

Biden- 4,061 (53.14 percent, down 1.81), Trump- 3,537 (46.28 percent, up 2.24)

Newton- Biden Hold

Biden- 29,794 (54.93 percent, up 4.84), Trump- 23,869 (44.01 percent, down 3.74)

Peach- Trump Hold

Biden- 5,920 (47.19 percent, down 0.37), Trump- 6,502 (51.83 percent, up 1.35)

Sumter- Biden Hold

Biden- 6,318 (52 percent, up 1.70), Trump- 5,732 (47.18 percent, down 0.90)

Terrell- Biden Hold

Biden- 2,376 (53.80 percent, down 0.42), Trump- 2,004 (45.38 percent, up 0.56)

Twiggs- Trump Hold

Biden- 2,044 (45.99 percent, down 2.60), Trump- 2,370 (53.33 percent, up 3.16)

Washington- Biden Hold

Biden- 4,730 (50.01 percent, up 0.28), Trump- 4,663 (49.30 percent, up 0.18)

Next, there are seventeen swing counties in Georgia. Similar to North Carolina, this subsection contains a mixture of suburbs and rural area, although there aren’t any notable cities proper within it. In 2016, Clinton won twelve of these counties with 50.3 percent of the vote, a notable improvement from the 46.1 percent and a net gain of 63,654 votes. Now Obama did win fourteen counties in this subsection in 2012 that were a mixture of the subsection’s rural and suburban counties, and five of these counties ultimately became Obama-Trump. On the other hand, Clinton counteracted this by flipping three counties that Romney won in 2012. Both the Obama-Trump and Romney-Clinton counties will be discussed further in the following section. Regardless of these losses, Clinton’s performance in this subsection overall was a step in the right direction and just as much an indicator of Trump’s struggles among suburban voters as it is Clinton’s struggles with rural voters.

Now in 2020, Biden did only win eleven counties, narrowly losing the Clinton-carried Burke County. But on the whole, Biden’s performance was a massive leap from Clinton’s already impressive showing in this subsection, winning a staggering 57.2 percent of the vote and adding 184,894 votes onto her total. This is the subsection that really highlights Biden’s gains in the Atlanta suburbs. From Clinton’s vote share in 2016, Biden added 7.5 percentage points in Cobb, almost 8 points in Douglas, 7.4 points in Gwinnett, 8.8 points in Henry, and 4.8 points in Newton. Even accounting for higher turnout, the impact of these suburban counties cannot be understated. In 2016, Clinton won these five counties by a margin of 37,924 votes. In 2020, Biden won them by a margin of 180,173 votes. Without these gains, Biden would not have carried Georgia.

Elsewhere in the subsection, Biden’s performance was more modest. He failed to carry any of the Obama-Trump counties, while allowing one (Baker) to slip into the solidly Republican column. But these losses are far outweighed by the gains in the more populous counties within the Atlanta metropolitan area, with five counties shifting into the solidly Democratic column.

As of Election Day, there have been 76,114 COVID cases in this subsection, setting the incidence rate at 3.2 percent (around the state average). While there is some variation between the counties, there aren’t any significant outliers in this subsection. On the other hand, there have been 1,523 deaths in this subsection as of Election Day, setting the fatality rate at about 2 percent (slightly below the state average). Regarding timing, there was also a sharp rise in cases from the spring months to the summer months. And while the cases in the early fall were slightly smaller than during the summer months, the load was still well above that of the spring. And for unemployment, the impact was similar to that of the rest of the state, going from 4.3 percent in March to 12 percent in April. Some counties (such as Baker and Early) were below this figure while others (such as Clay and Dooly) were considerably above it, but for the most part the individual counties stayed relatively close to the aggregate. And while the subsection has mostly recovered in the months since then, the unemployment rate was still 6.2 percent as of September.

Finally, there have been 59 BLM protests in this subsection as of Election Day, with 26 occurring in Cobb and 18 occurring in Gwinnett. While this subsection is certainly diverse racially, the fact that there are no major cities in this subsection limits the protest activity; most of the protests occurred within suburbs of Atlanta. Furthermore, while there are pockets of college graduates and young adults in this subsection, most of these are located within the aforementioned suburbs. Outside the Atlanta metropolitan area, many of these counties are rural, which doesn’t lend itself well to protest activity.

Flipped Counties

Baker- Trump Hold

Biden- 652 (41.93 percent, down 3.21), Trump- 897 (57.68 percent, up 3.87)

Cobb- Biden Hold

Biden- 221,846 (56.34 percent, up 7.45), Trump- 165,459 (42.02 percent, down 4.67)

Dooly- Trump Hold

Biden- 1,911 (46.55 percent, down 1.96), Trump- 2,159 (52.59 percent, up 2.04)

Early- Trump Hold

Biden- 2,437 (46.98 percent, up 1.67), Trump- 2,722 (52.48 percent, down 0.86)

Gwinnett- Biden Hold

Biden- 241,827 (58.43 percent, up 7.41), Trump- 166,413 (40.21 percent, down 4.93)

Henry- Biden Hold

Biden- 73,276 (59.70 percent, up 8.77), Trump- 48,187 (39.26 percent, down 7.26)

Peach- Trump Hold

Biden- 5,920 (47.19 percent, down 0.37), Trump- 6,502 (51.83 percent, up 1.35)

Quitman- Trump Hold

Biden- 497 (44.94 percent, up 0.78), Trump- 604 (54.61 percent, down 0.47)

Twiggs- Trump Hold

Biden- 2,044 (45.99 percent, down 2.60), Trump- 2,370 (53.33 percent, up 3.16)

Next, there are nine flipped counties from 2016 in Georgia, of which six are Obama-Trump and three are Romney-Clinton. With the exception of Quitman, all of these overlap with the swing counties, making discussion of them fairly repetitive. In 2012, President Obama received about 53 percent of the vote in the Obama-Trump counties and 44.3 percent of the vote in the Romney-Clinton counties. Four years later, Clinton faltered in the Obama-Trump counties, only getting 47.2 percent of the vote (and a net loss of 2,652 votes) while doing better in the Romney-Clinton counties, getting 50.1 percent of the vote there (along with a net gain of 66,937 votes). On the whole, considering that the Romney-Clinton counties are fairly large and concentrated in the Atlanta metropolitan area, these gains more than make up for the losses in the smaller, more rural Obama-Trump counties.

This time around, Biden captured all the Romney-Clinton counties while failing to flip any of the Obama-Trump counties. In the Obama-Trump counties, Biden received 46.5 percent of the vote (worse than Clinton) and only netted 1,239 votes from Clinton’s total. He lost ground in four of these counties while only making modest improvements in Early and Quitman. On the whole, this grouping reflects Biden’s struggles in rural counties, even those that traditionally voted Democrat before 2016. On the other hand, Biden got 57.7 percent of the vote in the Romney-Clinton counties and netted 160,618 votes from Clinton’s total. This is largely an extension of the story with the swing counties, in that losses in the smaller, rural counties were overtaken by major gains in the larger, more metropolitan counties.

As of Election Day, there have been 2,117 COVID cases in the Obama-Trump counties and 60,507 cases in the Romney-Clinton counties, setting their incidence rates at 3.3 percent and 3.1 percent respectively. For the most part, these counties remain fairly close to their respective aggregates, although the incidence rate in Early was over 5 percent. On the other hand, there have been 97 deaths in the Obama-Trump counties and 1,032 deaths in the Romney-Clinton counties, setting their fatality rates at about 4.6 percent and 1.7 percent respectively. Regarding timing, these counties saw a massive spike between the spring months and the summer months, and leveling off in the early fall months. And for unemployment, the Obama-Trump counties went from about 5 percent in March to 10.6 percent in April while the Romney-Clinton counties went from 4.1 percent in March to 12.1 percent in April. While the increase in the Obama-Trump counties is more mild than the rest of the state, the increase in the Romney-Clinton counties is more on par with it. And while they have both largely recovered in the months since then, their unemployment rates remained at 6.3 percent in the Obama-Trump counties and about 6 percent in the Romney-Clinton counties as of September.

Finally, there has only been 1 protest in the Obama-Trump counties, but 48 in the Romney-Clinton counties. Similar to the swing counties, this isn’t too surprising as the Obama-Trump counties do not contain any major cities that are conducive to protest activity, despite the prominence of black residents. Furthermore, the Obama-Trump counties do not contain many college graduates. On the other hand, the Romney-Clinton contain more favorable demographics and is relatively close to Atlanta, which can explain why more protests have occurred there.

Reclassifications

As with the other states, there are a few reclassifications for counties based on how their voting behavior changed from 2016 to 2020. These changes are reflected below.

Baker (Swing to Solidly Republican)

Burke (Clinton to Trump)

Clay (Swing to Solidly Democratic)

Cobb (Swing to Solidly Democratic)

Douglas (Swing to Solidly Democratic)

Fayette (Solidly Republican to Swing)

Gwinnett (Swing to Solidly Democratic)

Henry (Swing to Solidly Democratic)

Randolph (Solidly Democratic to Swing)

Webster (Solidly Republican to Swing)

In total, ten counties were reclassified from their 2016 subsections. Half of them are within the Atlanta metropolitan area, all of those shifting to the left of their 2016 classifications. Meanwhile, four counties are in the rural, southwestern corner of the state, of those two shifted to the right of their 2016 classifications and the other two shifting to the left. Finally, there’s Burke, which was a closely contested county in 2016 that narrowly flipped to Trump in 2020, meaning that it technically shifted to the right of its classification from four years ago.

In general, the main story here is how Biden consolidated support in the Atlanta metropolitan area. While Fulton and DeKalb were already deeply Democratic, Trump’s lack of appeal among suburban voters made a whole set of counties surrounding those two swing heavily in favor of Biden. But what’s interesting about Georgia is that, unlike North Carolina and some other states discussed in this series, Biden didn’t lose as much ground in rural portions of the state. Georgia has many pockets of poor, predominantly black residents that didn’t turn as heavily towards Trump as others. While Biden didn’t flip back any counties that Trump captured, he also didn’t lose as much ground as he did in other states with similar layouts.

Conclusion

There are many parallels one can draw between Georgia and North Carolina. Both are large southern states that have seen dramatic population growth in recent years, most notably around their largest cities. With that shift comes speculation on whether Georgia can become competitive politically and if it can go to a Democrat. In my previous article, I noted how North Carolina went to Obama in 2008 and that victory solidified a narrative that Democrats would continue to be competitive in that state due to its shifting demographics.

While that hasn’t amounted to much within North Carolina, many remain hopeful that Georgia can fulfill this “prophecy”, especially given Trump’s low polling numbers with suburban voters. In 2020, this came to pass as Biden carried the state by a small, yet effective margin. The backbone of Biden’s surgence in the state came from massive gains in the Atlanta metropolitan area. Granted, it wasn’t the only area; Biden also needed to make gains in the state’s medium-sized cities and not lose too much ground from Clinton in the rural counties. But in the end, counties like Cobb and Gwinnett were major basket of votes that Biden seized clear control over, which allowed him to run up the numbers.

Biden’s victory in Georgia garnered much attention in that it displays the potential for the Democratic coalition to expand across the “Sun Belt”. This, coupled by victories in both Senate runoff elections, presents a Democratic optimism in Georgia that feels reminiscent of that seen in North Carolina following 2008. At this point, it’s too early to determine whether the gains made in Georgia and other states will be enduring in future elections. Some question marks include Republican efforts in these states to restrict early and absentee voting and tighten voter identification requirements, the future role of Trumpism in the Republican Party and the success of Republican candidates without Trump’s name on the ballot, the midterm effects that should favor Republicans in the 2022 elections. But as easily as one can dismiss Biden’s gains in the Atlanta suburbs as anti-Trump backlash, one must also acknowledge the extent to which the results in Georgia reflect overall trends in the 2020 election. While Trump continued to do decently well in the counties he flipped from 2016, Biden more than made up for those losses with major gains in the suburbs.

So with that, this concludes this series on the swing states from the 2020 election. If you enjoyed this, please like and follow the Book Aisle. Also share this article on Facebook, LinkedIn, and other social media platforms.

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