President Donald Trump won a commanding victory over Democratic challenger Jon Ossoff in a runoff election Tuesday in a deeply divided House of Representatives race.
Ossoff, the former secretary of state, was narrowly defeated by Republican Tom Price in a district that includes parts of Columbus and Toledo.
Trump won the seat in 2018 by a slim margin of 6 percentage points.
Trump’s win was hailed as a sign of Democratic strength in the deep-red district, where Democrats had previously held a majority.
The district, a key part of the country’s opioid crisis, is often considered a bellwether in congressional races.
Democrats hope that Ossof’s victory will help push the GOP in a more progressive direction.
“I’m very proud of the Democratic Party, which I think has a lot of potential,” Trump said Tuesday.
“It’s a good place to be.
It’s a very, very strong place.”
Democrats have tried to capitalize on Ossofs election to retake the House majority, a task that is far from certain.
Republicans had hoped that a special election for House seats in Georgia, Missouri and North Carolina would bring Democrats back into control of Congress, where they had held a one-seat majority since 2006.
But all three of those states have voted for the Democrats in the last two presidential elections.
Democrats lost the House seat in North Carolina last year to Republican Roy Cooper.
They had hoped to do the same in Georgia to oust Rep. Tom Price, who became President Donald J. Trump’s health secretary last week.
Price’s victory also helped Democrats take back the Senate, which is now controlled by Republicans.
The House race was close, with Ossoft ahead by more than 20 percentage points, according to the Associated Press.
Trump won the state by more on the margin of his victory than his opponent, according in the AP’s tally.
The outcome will set off alarm bells for the Trump administration, which has been pushing the United States to embrace more progressive policies.
The president tweeted Tuesday morning that he had congratulated Ossofc but said he did not plan to spend more money than he did in 2018.
Ossoffe has pledged to raise $1.8 billion from wealthy donors, including the Koch brothers, to help him win the election.
The Republican nominee, Rep. David Price, said he was confident he would win the runoff election.
“This election is a referendum on the president, it’s a referendum not on my opponent, but on what we’re doing here in the House,” Price told reporters.
“I’m confident that I will win this election.”
Price was a member of Trump’s transition team and was the highest-ranking member of the Trump White House to back the president’s controversial immigration order.
Trump was also the one who signed the order in the first place.
Trump has been on a tear since taking office, often deriding Democratic rival Jon Osos candidacy as a “rigged election” and deriding the media for reporting that he did so.
Trump, who campaigned in the heavily Democratic district, also criticized Ossofts opponent in the runoff, Democrat David Price.
The president has frequently criticized Democrats in Congress, who he has accused of not doing enough to defend him during the Trump presidency.
Democrats say they are hopeful that the president will do better in his reelection bid than he has in other elections.
They point to the number of Democrats in statehouses across the country who have been appointed to lower-ranking positions in the Trump Cabinet.
The Democrats are also hoping that the loss of the special election could lead to more progressive Democratic candidates taking office in the future.
Republicans, who have held a solid majority in the 113th Congress since Republicans took control of the chamber in 2021, are counting on the vote to push them in a different direction, such as moving toward the presidency of the first female president.