20-year-old aide to Georgia Sen. Kelly Loeffler killed in crash ahead of Pence rally

A 20-year-old campaign staffer for Georgia Republican Sen. Kelly Loeffler died Friday morning in a highway crash just before Vice President Mike Pence arrived in the state to stump for Loeffler and fellow Georgia Sen. David Perdue.

Harrison Deal, a former intern for Perdue, was also a family friend of Georgia Republican Gov. Brian Kemp, who described him in a statement as “the Kemp son and brother we never had.”

Deal was killed on I-16 in Pooler, Ga., outside Savannah, where Pence spoke Friday afternoon. It’s unclear if the young aide was performing campaign duties at the time of the accident.

Loeffler and Perdue face a Jan. 5 runoff election against Democratic candidates Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff.

The outcome of the runoffs will dictate control of the Senate next year. Republicans will hold at least 50 seats in January, but if they lose both races, the Senate will be divided 50-50 and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris will break ties.

Pence said during a speech in Savannah that Deal, who is not believed to be related to the governor, was a “truly wonderful young man.”

Deal was due to graduate from the University of Georgia in 2022.

Loeffler did not attend the Pence rally due to the tragedy.

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