Democrats circle Atlanta statehouse seats where Trump struggled

Senate President Pro Tempore, David Shafer, R-Duluth, center, talks with a group of senators during a debate earlier this year. AJC file.

We told you earlier that a May 16 runoff for the state Senate District 32 seat vacated by Judson Hill of Marietta, a Republican, could become a test vote for the larger Sixth District contest on June 20:

But other districts in Atlanta’s suburbs may make for easier Democratic pickings. And it could start with two soon-to-be-opened state Senate seats.

David Shafer of Duluth and Hunter Hill of Smyrna both represent Senate districts that Hillary Clinton won in November. And both are vacating their seats to run for higher office – Hill for governor and Shafer for lieutenant governor.

Using November’s presidential returns, a DailyKos elections analysis notes that the bluest GOP-held state Senate seat – and best pickup opportunity for Democrats – is represented by Hunter Hill.  Fran Millar of Dunwoody is the third Republican in the Senate representing Clinton turf.

In the House, the landscape is even friendlier to Democrats. Only two Democrats represent districts taken by Donald Trump — Bill McGowan of Americus and Bob Trammell of Luthersville. But 14 Republicans hold Clinton turf.

State Rep. Rich Golick of Smyrna represents the “bluest seat of the bunch” – Clinton carried his district 55 to 41 percent. Three other GOPers are in territories that Clinton carried by double-digit margins.

Democratic Party of Georgia spokesman Michael Smith said the party is bullish on next year’s vote – but “not taking anything for granted.”

“Folks across the state are seeing the same stars align—and they’re coming out of the woodwork to run for office and help us build an even deeper bench.”

Check out the DailyKos spreadsheet here.


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