As the nation’s primary election campaigns get underway, the battleground in Georgia continues to heat up. The Republican race for governor in the Peach State is grabbing national attention as incumbent Brian Kemp and top challenger David Perdue butt heads.
Former Senator David Perdue spoke with Fox News in an exclusive one-on-one interview to discuss the primary. He says the reason he entered the race wasn’t because he’s “dying to be governor,” but because he doesn’t think Gov. Kemp has what it takes to win in November.
Proud of his endorsement from former President Trump, Perdue is trying to “save our state from Stacey Abrams being governor,” he says. “I don’t believe Brian Kemp can pull all parts of the [Republican] party together because he said no to Trump on so many things over the last two years. He caved in on our election to let Stacey Abrams take over our election in Georgia.”
Voters at home “have two choices,” says Cody Hall, a spokesman for the Kemp campaign.
“The governor, who has a record … the lowest unemployment rate, record-breaking job and investment numbers, even during a global pandemic,” Hall said. “Compare that to a failed politician now, who is attacking 7,500 jobs coming to a local community, who is attacking state involvement in economic development and who has built a career in outsourcing American jobs to countries overseas.”
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Hall is referring to a recent $5 billion investment deal Gov. Kemp brokered with Rivian Automotive in December 2021. Perdue criticized the move, saying Kemp is “selling [Georgia] out to George Soros,” who recently bought nearly 20 million shares in the company. Growing numbers of residents in the area where the new manufacturing plant is expected to be built say they oppose the deal and believe the governor isn’t listening to their concerns.
Perdue recognizes the current shape of the Republican Party in Georgia is in question. He says the state’s top four Republican elected officials have “let us down.” He calls it an “unholy alliance” of Kemp, Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan, Attorney General Chris Carr and Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger.
“Donald Trump has called that out, and we cannot let it happen again. That’s why I have the Trump endorsement,” Perdue said.
Despite acknowledging some Georgia voters may be questioning the Republican Party overall, Perdue isn’t afraid to defend the GOP.
“I’m a Republican, and I’m questioning it, but it doesn’t change the ethos issue,” Perdue said proudly. “I’m not happy with the way our leaders have managed this thing in the last two years, but I’m still a Republican and I believe in that Republican ethos. And the evidence is overwhelming at all the Democrat failures around the country.”
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Part of the chaos that unfolded during the 2020 election cycle in Georgia stemmed from former President Trump, who made unfounded claims of widespread voter fraud. Three recounts confirmed the initial result: President Biden won Georgia. But the former president has consistently rejected the results, alleging fraud as recently as Feb. 26 during his speech at CPAC.
“Ballots in Georgia and other swing states were trafficked and sold on an unprecedented scale,” Trump claimed.
With the ongoing Ukraine-Russia crisis, former President Trump made comments during a radio interview, calling the Russian president a “genius” on the day Vladimir Putin ordered troops into separatist-backed regions in Ukraine. When asked for reaction, Perdue stood firmly with the former President.
“So many things are taken out of context, but what he’s talking about is that Putin played Biden like a champ. I mean, he really did,” Perdue said.