Karen Handel announced March 25 she is running for the 6th Congressional District seat, months after losing it narrowly in a historic loss to Lucy McBath that flipped the Republican stronghold to a Democrat in a movement to “flip the Sixth.”
Handel, a Republican from Roswell, announced her bid Monday morning for the seat in a video and press release “to take back Georgia’s 6th” in next year’s election. The district includes parts of Brookhaven, Dunwoody and Sandy Springs as well as other sections of north Fulton and Cobb counties.
Brandon Beach, a Republican state senator from Alpharetta, previously announced his bid for the seat.
Handel, a former Georgia secretary of state and Fulton County Commission chair, held the seat for about 18 months after winning an epic special election battle in 2017 against Democrat Jon Ossoff. Last year, she lost to McBath, who made the national scene as a gun control activist after her son was murdered in an infamous shooting.
Handel’s campaign announcement video included attacks on national Democrats, including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris of California, who was in Atlanta over the weekend as part of her presidential campaign.
The video includes news clips of Pelosi saying no money would go for a wall to be built at the southern border, U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York touting her “Green New Deal,” U.S. Rep. Rashida Tlaib of Michigan using an epithet to call for the impeachment of President Trump, and U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota being interviewed about a tweet criticizing the Israeli government.
“I am determined to STOP Nancy Pelosi, specialist interest groups and the coastal liberal billionaires that only care about promoting their self-serving liberal agenda,” Handel said in her announcement.
Handel said in the video her focus will be on jobs, the military, the opioid crisis and stopping human trafficking.
While its borders shifted over the years, the 6th Congressional District had been a solidly Republican seat for decades, held by major Republican figures since the 1970s. Former office-holders include Newt Gingrich, who went on to become Speaker of the U.S. House, and Johnny Isakson, who is now a U.S. senator.
McBath tweeted out a fundraiser alert this morning after Handel’s announcement.
@karenhandel just announced she is running against me AGAIN. A true career politician, Handel has run for office over and over for the last 17 years.
— Lucy McBath (@lucymcbath) March 25, 2019