After Georgia, Republicans celebrating, Dems searching

Democrats have now lost all four opportunities to win in special elections so far this year, following earlier losses in Republican-held districts in Kansas and Montana.

Handel's tough race, combined with closer-than-usual GOP House victories in Kansas, Montana and SC, suggests Trump will dominate the coming election cycle, forcing Republicans to make peace with him, for better or worse. "Democrats would do much better as a party if they got together with Republicans on Healthcare, Tax Cuts, Security", the president tweeted.

But Democrats needed no prodding from the White House to engage in fresh debate about how to respond after what they had hoped would be a victory that would trigger enough momentum for them to retake the House of Representatives in 18 months.

After scoring their latest victories, Republicans were spiking the football.

Former Georgia secretary of state Karen Handel on Tuesday defeated political newcomer Democrat Jon Ossoff, 52 percent to 48 percent.

Democrats, meanwhile, were left licking their wounds.

Of course, with Republican Karen Handel winning on Tuesday night, it's clear that Democrats still have major problems on their hands. He has said he grew up in the district and now lives close to Emory University, where his fiancee attends medical school.

At a Dallas rally last month, anti-Trump Democrats promised to take Congress back from Republicans and restore Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi as House speaker.

Special elections can be bellwethers of the national mood, but that national mood isn't set in stone. "But these decisions aren't always made based on logic alone".

MSNBC's Joe Scarborough early Wednesday said Jon Ossoff's loss in the Georgia special House race should be a "wake-up call" for Democrats.

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"But Democrats can not let this defeat tamper our enthusiasm".

The moment was only the sharpest of many long monologues from Scarborough about how Democrats needed to recruit better candidates that reflected their districts.

Progressive activist groups were sharply critical of Ossoff's moderate campaign.

"A special thanks to the president of the United States of America", she said as her supporters chanted, "Trump!" On the campaign trail he didn't make any real damaging verbal mistakes.

Democracy for America chair Jim Dean blasted the Democratic establishment's "unforced errors". The outcome of the race-Handel won 53 percent to Ossoff's 47 percent, a much larger margin than predicted-should remind Democrats of the last time they flooded an election with out-of-state cash: Wendy Davis's infamous run for Texas governor in 2014.

Citing the June 14 shooting at a congressional Republican baseball practice that left House Majority Whip Steve Scalise injured, Handel urged a "more civil way to deal with our disagreements".

That race was won by Republican Kay Kirkpatrick, a physician with close ties to Tom Price. The bulk of Ossoff's campaign donations of course came from large Democratic states like New York, California, and MA, with a mere 14 percent coming from Georgia voters.

If this was a referendum on Trump, the voters are still supporting him. He added later: "The fight goes on". A win in a district that Republican Tom Price carried by 23 points in 2016 might have engendered mass panic among Republicans, leading to retirements, more distancing from the Trump agenda, and, possibly, an abandonment of the GOP health-care bill. "And we will fight".

Republicans have held the seat since 1979. "We've laid a marker on the ground - next year will be brutal for Republicans, because they won't be able to spend tens of millions in every district", Moulitsas said.