[private]Democrat Jon Ossoff vaulted out to a substantial lead over the Republican candidates in the 6th Congressional District race in a new poll commissioned by a GOP website.
The poll has Ossoff at 40.9 percent of the likely voters polled, with Republicans Karen Handel at 16.1 percent and Bob Gray at 15.7 percent.
None of the other candidates in the sprawling race could break double digits in the poll conducted by Clout Research for the Z-Politics website.
Ossoff, a political unknown before the special election was called to replace Tom Price in Congress, has taken command of the first phase of the race both in the poll numbers and in fund-raising.
Although the 6th District, which covers a portion of the northern Atlanta suburbs, is predominantly Republican, Democats have mounted an effort to try to swipe the seat in a low-turnout special election. Donald Trump only carried the district by 48-47 percent in the presidential election.
The election is a jungle primary, with all 18 candidates on one ballot regardless of party designation. If no one gets 50 percent of the vote on April 18, there will be a June 20 runoff.
Among the five Democratic candidates, former legislator Ron Slotin had 2.9 percent in the Clout poll. Other Republican candidates include former legislator Judson Hill (9.2 percent in the poll), former legislator Dan Moody (5.1 percent), David Abroms (1.7 percent) and Bruce LeVell (0.6 percent).
As Ossoff, a former congressional aide and documentary filmmaker, has boosted his advantage in the polls, the Republicans in the race have been aiming their attacks at him rather than at each other.
© 2017 by The Georgia Report