Sen. Schumer Declares Victory In Georgia, Promising That 'Help Is On The Way'

Wednesday, January 6th 2021, 10:39 am
By: CBS News

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, who is poised to become majority leader if Democrats control of the Senate, declared victory in both Georgia races and said Democrats are committed to aggressively pursue their agenda.

"It feels like a brand new day. For the first time in six years, Democrats will operate a majority in the United States Senate — and that will be very good for the American people," Schumer said in a statement. "America is experiencing one of the greatest crises we have ever faced, and the Senate Democratic Majority is committed to delivering the bold change and help Americans need and demand. Senate Democrats know America is hurting — help is on the way."

CBS News projects Raphael Warnock will win his race against GOP Senator Kelly Loeffler, but Jon Ossoff's race remains too close to call. Ossoff held a slight lead as of Wednesday morning. Democrats need to win both seats to win control of the upper chamber.

Schumer said he is "so proud of both of their campaigns and excited to welcome them to the Senate."

"As Majority Leader, President-elect Biden and Vice President-elect Harris will have a partner who is ready, willing and able to help achieve a forward-looking agenda and deliver help and bold change to the American people," the New York Democrat added. "For too long, much-needed help has been stalled or diluted by a Republican-led Senate and President Trump. That will change with a Democratic Senate, Democratic House, and a Democratic President. We will work every day to reward the faith that the American people have placed in us."

President-elect Joe Biden on Wednesday morning congratulated Warnock on his victory in a statement and he expressed confidence that Ossoff will be declared the winner in his race later in the day.

"I congratulate the people of Georgia, who turned out in record numbers once again, just as they did in November, to elect two new Senators, demand action, and call on our elected leaders to end the gridlock and move us forward as a nation," Biden said.

He also thanked the organizing efforts of Stacey Abrams and Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms.

Biden argued that Georgia's voters had delivered him with a mandate for action "on COVID-19, on economic relief, on climate, on racial justice, on voting rights and so much more."

"It looks like we will emerge from yesterday's election with Democratic leadership in the House and the Senate, and of course I'm pleased that we will be able to work with Speaker Pelosi and a Majority Leader Schumer," Biden said. 

However, he also renewed his call for bipartisanship, saying "I'm also just as determined today as I was yesterday to try to work with people in both parties — at the federal, state, and local levels — to get big things done for our nation."

If Democrats win both seats, they will have the narrowest possible majority in the Senate, with Vice President-elect Kamala Harris casting any tie-breaking vote, meaning that most major legislation will likely need some support from Republicans. 

Biden also expressed confidence that the Senate would quickly confirm his cabinet nominees.

"After the past four years, after the election, and after today's election certification proceedings on the Hill, it's time to turn the page. The American people demand action and they want unity. I am more optimistic than I ever have been that we can deliver both," Biden said.