lost

Will Karen Handel take back the House seat she won in 2017 and lost in 2018?

Georgia’s 6th Congressional District has seen one of the hardest turns left of any House seat during Donald Trump’s presidency.



Karen Handel et al. standing next to a knife


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Longtime GOP Rep. Tom Price easily won reelection in 2016 before being plucked as Trump’s Health and Human Services secretary in what turned out to be a short-term gig. A June 2017 special election to replace Price ended in victory for Republican Karen Handel, a businesswoman who was once the deputy chief of staff to second lady Marilyn Quayle.

But Handel’s House tenure was short. She lost 18 months later to Democratic challenger and gun control activist Lucy McBath, the mother of Jordan Davis, who at 17 was shot and killed following an argument at a gas station in Florida about loud music.

Now, Handel is seeking a rematch in a district that includes many of Atlanta’s affluent northern suburbs, once a GOP stronghold. The area was once represented by House Speaker Newt Gingrich and Rep. Johnny Isakson, who later became a senator. But like the state of Georgia, the district is now much more mixed politically, with an influx of professional-class workers, immigrants, and retirees from the Northeast and elsewhere who once flocked to Florida.

The campaign of Joe Biden, the Democratic presidential nominee, is heavily targeting the district, as are two Democratic Senate candidates in search of swing voters. That’s all likely to help McBath as she tries to prove she’s not a one-term wonder in Congress.

Officials with the House Republicans’ campaign arm aren’t particularly enthusiastic about Handel’s comeback bid, but they’re backing her as the GOP nominee. Handel’s views on social issues are deemed too conservative for the district. However, she does have name recognition, having been Georgia’s secretary of state from 2007 to 2010 before pursuing a gubernatorial

‘As a chef I feel lost without my kitchen’

The Michelin-starred chef and restaurateur Marcus Wareing considered quitting the kitchen for a role in farming, such were his concerns during lockdown for the future of his business.

‘Over the last six months I’ve thought about a different career,’ he admits in the latest episode of the podcast Biting Talk, in which he talks candidly of his fears for the restaurant industry.

‘During lockdown I watched as my bank account went down and down, and I’ve had to ask myself how much energy do I want to put into [my business], should I look at new things or take an early retirement?’

Wareing, who owns two London restaurants, Marcus at The Berkeley Hotel in Knightsbridge and The Gilbert Scott at St Pancras, says he experienced ‘some dark days,’ adding that ‘life is full of lots of challenges. I’ve had some great highs and some really weird lows and some tough times. As a chef I feel lost without my kitchen.’

His ‘burning desire’ was ‘to get back in my chef’s jacket. I’m tired of the doom and gloom. We’ve come together as an industry, we’ve got choppy roads ahead but we have to manage that and welcome our guests with smiles and a glass of champagne.’

Wareing re-opened his restaurant Marcus this week after a closure of six months but has warned that ‘the gamechanger will be another lockdown. It would be catastrophic for the industry [and] restaurants would close like dominoes.’

Listen to the full interview with Marcus Wareing on the latest edition of Biting Talk presented by William Sitwell by clicking on the audio player above. This week’s guests include the UK Hospitality spokesperson and government lobbyist Kate Nicholls who reveals ‘the iron fist’ in her velvet glove, East London baker Francesca Strange of The Proof, up-and-coming chef