Former Sen. David Perdue said Monday he is challenging incumbent Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp, at the instigation of former President Donald Trump, setting up one of 2022’s most divisive Republican intraparty battles.
Trump encouraged Perdue to run against Kemp, who earned the former president’s wrath by refusing to help him overturn President Joe Biden’s victory in Georgia in the last presidential election.
Perdue, who in January lost a U.S. Senate run-off election to Democrat Jon Ossoff, blamed Kemp for his defeat, saying the GOP governor has “failed all of us and cannot win in November.” Perdue said he is the only Republican in Georgia who can defeat the likely Democratic nominee, voting rights activist Stacey Abrams, who narrowly lost to Kemp in 2018.
“Think about how different it would be today if Kemp had fought Abrams first instead of fighting Trump,” Perdue said in a video announcement. “Kemp caved before the election and the country is paying the price today. It’s time for a change.”
Kemp has repeatedly noted that Perdue at one time backed his reelection bid and said he would not enter the Georgia primary.
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SOURCE: USA Today, David Jackson and Phillip M. Bailey