Georgia Election: Fani Willis and Judge McAfee Win Primaries


ATLANTA — Two key figures in the Georgia election interference trial involving former President Donald Trump secured decisive victories over their primary challengers on Tuesday night.

Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis and Fulton County Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee won their respective races, ensuring their continued tenure in the predominantly Democratic jurisdiction. The Associated Press declared both outcomes less than an hour after the polls closed at 7 p.m. Eastern.

Willis garnered close to 90% of the vote in early returns, defeating her challenger Christian Wise Smith. Meanwhile, McAfee won against Robert Patillo II, capturing 83% of the early returns. Fulton County, the most populous county in Georgia, encompasses much of Atlanta.

Though their victories were anticipated, McAfee engaged extensively in campaigning, participating in three candidate forums, a parade, and seven church services, among other activities. Willis made a last-minute appeal to voters with an appearance on Rachel Maddow’s MSNBC show.

“I need Fulton County voters to get out and vote,” Willis said to Maddow. “I need people around the country to support me big and small, to say that we are going to be a country that still believes in the rule of law.”

Willis will contend with Republican challenger Courtney Kramer in November, but the race is expected to lean heavily in her favor. President Joe Biden secured 73% of the Fulton County vote in the 2020 election.

Willis and McAfee would have remained in office through the end of the year regardless, but their primary victories allow them more bandwidth to concentrate on the highly publicized trial that has brought global attention to Atlanta.

Haisten Willis
Haisten Willis
White House Reporter. Before moving to D.C., Haisten was an Atlanta-based freelance journalist, writing for the Washington Post, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, and U.S. News & World Report, among other outlets. From 2020 to 2022, he was the national Freedom of Information Committee chairman at the Society of Professional Journalists.

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