Trump-backed candidate thrashed in Georgia Republican primary

Donald Trump

Donald Trump

Georgia Republican Governor Brian Kemp won his party’s primary on Tuesday over a challenger endorsed by Donald Trump.

Kemp’s victory marked the former U.S. president’s biggest defeat so far in his effort to play kingmaker ahead of November’s midterm elections.

He will face Stacey Abrams, a progressive who secured the Democratic nomination on Tuesday.

Abrams narrowly lost to Kemp in the 2018 contest for governor

Georgia voters were still waiting to see whether Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger also weathered Trump’s bid to oust him.

Trump had backed former U.S. Senator David Perdue after Kemp angered him by refusing to try to overturn his defeat in the 2020 election.

Edison Research called the race for Kemp, who held a commanding 73%-23% lead over Perdue.

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“It looks pretty obvious right now. I just called the governor and I congratulated him,” Perdue told his supporters.

The night was not a total loss for Trump. Herschel Walker, a former American football star, easily won the Republican nomination to represent Georgia in the U.S. Senate.

Trump had endorsed Walker, who will face Democratic U.S. Senator Raphael Warnock on Nov. 8.

Raffensperger, who rejected a plea by Trump in 2020 to “find” enough votes to alter the outcome, faces U.S. Representative Jody Hice, who earned Trump’s endorsement and has echoed his fraud claims, in a race that polls suggest is tight.

Raffensperger led Hice 51% to 33%, with about a third of the expected vote counted, according to Edison Research.

Trump has made more than 190 endorsements since leaving office, mostly for incumbent Republicans who face no serious primary opposition.

He has amassed a mixed record in competitive contests. His nominee for U.S. Senate in Pennsylvania, the television host Dr. Mehmet Oz, is in a race still too close to call a week after voting. read more

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