The fourth Democratic presidential debate happened last night in Westerville, Ohio, but the fifth, on Nov. 20, will be held in Georgia.

Why Georgia?

Georgia has a strong potential to become purple state, according to University of Georgia Political Science Professor Charles Bullock. This is due to the close gubernatorial election in 2018. Bullock believes the state of Georgia has the potential to vote for the election of a Democratic presidential candidate for the first time in 28 years. He pointed out that Democratic candidates hope that their supporters will become more active by having the debate in Georgia.

How Did The Counties Vote in the 2018 Midterms?

Overall in the state of Georgia, Gov. Brian Kemp received 50.22% of the vote while the Democratic candidate, Stacey Abrams, received 48.83%. As seen in the county breakdown below, the metro-Atlanta and Atlanta area had a Democratic majority vote.

Athens-Clarke County also predominately voted for Abrams with a 70.27% majority. However, the surrounding counties, including Barrow, Oconee, Jackson, Oglethorpe and Madison, had a majority supporting Kemp, hovering around 70% to 80% support. Bullock stated that younger voters typically vote Democratic and have done so in the last three Georgia elections. According to Bullock, this is one of many factors that Democratic candidates believe will help them win in Georgia.


Voter Turnout

Georgia broke the midterm voter turnout record during the 2018 election with 4 million votes counted, more than the previous record from 2008 of 3.9 million votes. Information provided by the Secretary of State showed that in Athens-Clarke County, the demographic of 18-24 year old voters had a 50.1% turnout rate. However, voters aged 65 and over had a turnout rate of 73.75%. Nearby in Barrow County, 18- to 24-year-old voters had a lower turnout rate of 32.85%.

Looking Ahead

At this point, the location within Georgia of the fifth Democratic Presidential Debate and the candidates who will attend has not been determined. Bullock anticipates that the debate will be held in the Greater Atlanta area.

Katie Anderson is senior majoring in journalism at the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communications at the University of Georgia.



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