(The Center Square) – More than the results of the presidential election are hinging on Georgia’s vote count.

While most of the country is watching Georgia to help determine the outcome between President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden in the race for president, the final vote count also will determine whether two U.S. Senate races in Georgia will have a runoff election in January.

As it stands now, incumbent Republican U.S. Sen. David Perdue leads Democrat Jon Ossoff by 111,138 votes, with a 49.98% to 47.71% advantage – below the more than 50% of the vote Perdue needs to avoid a runoff against Ossoff on Jan. 5.

Georgia elections official Gabriel Sterling said Thursday afternoon about 47,277 ballots still needed to be counted. He said an additional 8,899 military ballots still could be returned and accepted by Friday. The state has no way of knowing how many of those outstanding military ballots could be returned.

“If overtime is required when all of the votes have been counted, we’re ready, and we will win,” Perdue’s campaign manager, Ben Fry, said in a statement Thursday morning.

“The votes are still being counted, but we are confident that Jon Ossoff’s historic performance in Georgia has forced Senator David Perdue to continue defending his indefensible record of unemployment, disease and corruption,” Ossoff’s campaign said Thursday afternoon in a statement. 

A special election on Tuesday’s ballot to fill the U.S. Senate seat vacated by Johnny Isakson, who retired, already has produced a runoff between Republican U.S. Sen. Kelly Loeffler, who was appointed to the seat in December, and Democrat Raphael Warnock, who is the senior pastor of the Atlanta church where Martin Luther King Jr. preached.

This article was initially published at TheCenterSquare

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