• Both Biden and Trump view Georgia as a highly-coveted electoral prize in the 2024 election.
  • In 2020, Biden narrowly won the swing state after years of GOP dominance on the presidential level.
  • But Republicans are aiming to flip the state this year. And polling points to another close race.

In 2020, President Joe Biden’s victory in Georgia was perhaps one of his most satisfying Election night victories as the state had long been reliably Republican on the presidential level.

Powered by a robust showing in the Atlanta metropolitan area, strong turnout with Black voters and young people across the state, and dual Senate races that boosted Democratic enthusiasm, Biden won Georgia by 11,779 votes out of nearly 5 million ballots cast.

The state now boasts two Democratic US senators, Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff, after years of GOP dominance on the federal level.

But Republicans also won every non-federal statewide office in 2022, which included Gov. Brian Kemp's victory over his 2018 opponent, former state House Minority Leader Stacey Abrams. And the GOP retained control of the Georgia legislature.

So Georgia remains a highly-competitive swing state, with both Biden and former President Donald Trump hoping to win its 16 electoral votes.

Where does the race in Georgia stand less than seven months before the election?

Biden waves to supporters after speaking at a campaign event in Atlanta on March 9, 2024. Foto: Brynn Anderson/AP

Surveys point to a close race

A Wall Street Journal battleground state poll conducted in Georgia in March showed Trump with a scant one-point lead (44%-43%) over Biden among registered voters in a head-to-head matchup.

In a race between the two major-party candidates, Georgia gave Trump his narrowest advantage among the seven swing states that were polled, which also included Arizona, Michigan, Nevada, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin.

Other recent surveys, including ones conducted by CBS News and Marist, showed Trump with leads of 3 points and 4 points, respectively.

According to the Marist Georgia Poll, the top issue among Georgians ahead of November is preserving democracy. It was cited by 25% of respondents as their top issue, and Biden eked out a one-point advantage over Trump on who would best handle the issue.

Immigration and inflation were the second- and third-most important issues for registered voters. Trump had the edge on those.

A view of the gold-domed Georgia State Capitol and downtown Atlanta. Foto: AP Photo/Steve Helber, File

The Atlanta metro area is an electoral juggernaut

In 2020, Biden's statewide win was propelled by Fulton County, which is anchored by Atlanta, and the populous suburbs that surround the capital city. Several of these jurisdictions, including Cobb and Gwinnett counties, were once reliably Republican but have swung heavily toward Democrats on the federal level. Nearby Clayton, DeKalb, and Henry counties also went strongly for Biden.

These voting shifts have given Democrats a major opening in a state that as recently as 2012 was largely seen as out-of-reach for then-President Barack Obama during his reelection campaign.

In 2020, Biden easily won Fulton County (73% to 26%) over Trump and netted nearly 243,000 votes out of that one county alone, which went a long way in countering the then-president's strong showing in many of the state's exurban and rural areas.

Voter mobilization in the state's major population centers will be essential for Biden this year, especially given his early struggles in motivating many young and minority voters.

Trump stops at a Chick-fil-A in Atlanta on April 10, 2024. Foto: AP Photo/Jason Allen

Will Republicans unite?

In last month's Georgia GOP presidential primary, Trump easily defeated his onetime opponent, former UN ambassador Nikki Haley.

Trump won more than 497,000 votes in the primary, compared to Haley's about 78,000 votes. But Haley still received about 20,000 Election day votes even though she exited the race a week earlier.

A bulk of Haley's voters came from the Atlanta metropolitan area, primarily in suburbs where Trump was tripped up by Biden in 2020.

And many of these voters weren't thrilled that Trump disputed his statewide loss in the aftermath of that election, which resulted in the then-president's efforts to pressure Kemp and Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to help him overturn Biden's victory in Georgia.

Kemp and Raffensperger refused to aid Trump, and despite the former president's unsuccessful attempts to oust both men from office in 2022, they remain the highest-profile Republicans in state government.

The 2024 results in Georgia will be a huge test of the Trump-era GOP's staying power in what has become a true purple state.

LEES OOK: Staat Biden straks wel op het stembiljet in Republikeinse staten? In Ohio en Alabama mogelijk niet (Engels)