Tight presidential race affects Georgia's Senate contest - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Tight presidential race affects Georgia's Senate contest

(Source: WTOC) (Source: WTOC)

By KATHLEEN FOODY
Associated Press

ATLANTA (AP) - Johnny Isakson heads into the final days of the Georgia U.S. Senate race with a comfortable lead. But the Republican incumbent still needs to avoid a nine-week runoff election.

Isakson faces Democrat Jim Barksdale and Libertarian Allen Buckley on Nov. 8. The three-way field and the unexpectedly tight presidential race between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton in Georgia is complicating Isakson's bid for a third term.

An average of public polls shows Isakson leading by 11 percentage points but he hasn't crossed 50 percent. State law requires a runoff if no candidate wins more than 50 percent in November.

Isakson's reputation for working across party lines won over some non-Republican voters in previous campaigns. Barksdale is trying to prevent that by ramping up criticism of Isakson's continued support for Trump.

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