A Republican civil war is brewing in the Georgia race for governor. News spread Sunday that former Sen. David Perdue could jump in the Georgia governor race. Perdue is expected to announce on Monday.
Georgia faith organizer Billy Michael Honor tweeted things were about to get real.
“David Perdue going public about challenging Kemp for the Republican Gubernatorial nomination is the equivalent to a declaration of civil war in the Georgia GOP,” Honor tweeted. “It’s going to get ugly.”
Despite backing by former President Trump, Perdue lost his seat in the January runoff to current Sen. Jon Ossoff. The one-term senator infamously refused to debate Ossoff during the runoff, leaving his opponent to debate an empty podium. Despite Trump’s support, Perdue and short-lived Sen. Kelly Loeffler lost their election bids.
Still upset over his loss in Georgia in 2020, Trump has made it clear that anybody but Kemp needs to be the Republican nominee. According to the New York Times, Perdue was on the fence about running but is jumping in the race for fear of Stacey Abrams becoming governor.
Earlier this year, former state Rep. Vernon Jones announced his run for governor, trying to curry favor with the former president. In a statement shared by Atlanta’s WSB-TV, Jones questioned Perdue’s motives asking if it was a veiled attempt “to cover Kemp’s flank” in a message riddled with false narratives and propaganda.
“In addition to introducing Gov. Kemp at the 2021 Georgia GOP convention, Perdue recently proclaimed we already have a Republican Governor [in the] The Brunswick News,” Jones said. “These are two peas in a pod! I’m the only candidate for Governor who has called for the elimination of state income taxes, a forensic audit of all 159 counties, didn’t abandon President Trump or his America/Georgia first agenda, and can defeat the socialist Stacey Abrams in the general election.”
Despite telling a small group last month he wants a “unified” party, Perdue’s move will do the exact opposite. And while Republicans run on saving the state from the leadership of Democrats like Abrams, her campaign seems focused on the issues impacting communities statewide.
Lauren Groh-Wargo, campaign manager for Abrams’ 2018 campaign, tweeted that neither Republican would do anything meaningful to address the health care challenges facing thousands of Georgians.
“While David Perdue and Brian Kemp fight each other, Stacey Abrams will be fighting for the people of Georgia,” Groh-Wargo tweeted. “Both Kemp and Perdue would continue to deprive 500,000 Georgians of health coverage that our taxpayers already paid for.”
The presumptive Democratic nominee, Abrams, will be running alongside Sen. Raphael Warnock, who is already up for re-election. Warnock filled the remainder of former Sen. Johnny Isakson’s term.
Following Abrams’ lead, Warnock has made it a point to get out around the state, paying particular attention to rural communities since his election in January.