Raphael Warnock, a U.S Democrat has won one of Georgia’s two Senate runoffs Wednesday, becoming the first Black Senator in his State’s history.
Mr. Warnock, a pastor who spent the past 15 years leading the Atlanta church where Martin Luther King Jr. preached, defeated Republican incumbent Kelly Loeffler.
His victory is a symbol of a striking shift in Georgia’s politics as the swelling number of diverse, college-educated voters flex their power in the heart of the Deep South. It follows Joe Biden’s victory in November, when he became the first Democratic presidential candidate to carry the state since 1992.
Raphael Warnock, 51, acknowledged his improbable victory in a message to supporters early Wednesday, citing his family’s experience with poverty. His mother, he said, used to pick “somebody else’s cotton” as a teenager.
Meanwhile Republican incumbent Kelly Loeffler refused to concede.
Loeffler, who remained a Georgia Senator until the results of Tuesday’s election were finalized, said she would return to Washington on Wednesday morning to join a small group of Senators planning to challenge Congress’ vote to certify Biden’s victory.
“We are going to keep fighting for you, This is about protecting the American dream.” she said.