After a nine-week runoff, Loudermilk emerged victorious against Bob Barr by a margin of more than 30 percent, a number that held constant throughout Tuesday night as results rolled in. As of press time, according to the Georgia secretary of state’s website, Loudermilk received 33,589 votes, or 66.33 percent, against Barr’s 17,050, or 33.67 percent. With no Democratic challenger on the November ballot, the runoff win makes Loudermilk District 11’s next representative.
In his victory speech, Loudermilk thanked the crowd for its support, citing those who began the campaign with him a year ago.
“Words can’t express what we feel tonight for everyone that’s here in this room. When I look across this room I see people who have been with us from the very beginning. You put in the hours, you put in the time, you put in the funding and the investment — not in the candidate, but in the cause. On behalf of my family I want to say thank you to each and every person who is here,” he said.
A county-by-county breakdown showed Loudermilk carrying Bartow County with 5,130 votes to Barr’s 1,424. In Cherokee County Loudermilk gained 13,565 votes, with Barr getting 5,484. In Cobb County Loudermilk got 13,057 votes against Barr’s 8,918. Fulton County cast 1,837 votes for Loudermilk and 1,224 votes for Barr. All numbers are unofficial until confirmed by election officials.
Loudermilk thanked Bartow residents for their support, adding he was not a “territorial” candidate.
“Thank you to everybody out there. I mean they responded to our positive message. I think our message of restoring America resonated with people all across the district,” he said. “I’ve never been a territorial candidate or representative. It’s not about the address that’s on your mailbox, but it’s the principles which you stand for. We’re going to represent this district. When one county succeeds, the other counties succeed.”
As the first Bartow County congressman since William Harrell Felton, who served from 1875 to 1881, Loudermilk believed his success at the polls came down to staying positive and focusing on policy issues.
“I think it was just staying on message, being positive, staying focused on our campaign plan and our message of we can turn this nation around I think resonated with people. I think that was the difference, just having a positive message. ... I think that’s what it was. People are tired of Washington-style politics. I came in as someone with experience, but yet still [a] Washington outsider. I think that was part of it,” he said.
Though he said it “felt great” for the campaign to be over, Loudermilk believed he would not be taking much time to rest, as there are campaign signs to collect and a transition to work on. However, he did say his staff deserves a rest.
“We’re going to give them a little time off. We’ll be right back at it and start working on transition and implementing some of these ideas to fix America,” Loudermilk said.
For additional details on the election returns, visit the secretary of state’s website at www.sos.ga.gov.