In 2018, when Donald Trump endorsed Brian Kemp in Georgia, Trump sent Vice President Mike Pence to make it official. I was the MC for that event in Macon, Georgia, where the Vice President brought the President’s endorsement. Fast forward to 2022. I’ve confirmed with both sides, Vice President Mike Pence is himself formally endorsing Brian Kemp and will be in Georgia the day before the May 24th primary election. on May 23, Pence will campaign in Georgia for Kemp.
This news comes the day after Hyundai announced it will build the largest EV plant in the nation in Georgia. Both are a final boost to the Kemp campaign.
Kemp has never been behind in the polls. Initial polling in the race had Kemp under 50%, but for the last three months, every public and all the private polling I’m aware of has had Kemp above 50%, meaning he will escape a runoff. Likewise, President Trump has largely downplayed the race and set expectations for a Kemp victory.
With Pence for Kemp, it puts him directly at odds with President Trump. We probably will not see Perdue attacking Pence for the endorsement, though perhaps Trump will say something.
Pence, for his part, says, “Brian Kemp is one of the most successful conservative governors in America. He built a safer and stronger Georgia by cutting taxes, empowering parents and investing in teachers, funding law enforcement, and standing strong for the right to life. Brian Kemp is my friend, a man dedicated to faith, family and the people of Georgia. I am proud to offer my full support for four more years of Brian Kemp as governor of the great state of Georgia!”
This is some bold leadership on Mike Pence’s part. He’s also just a thoroughly decent man doing the right thing.
As for David Perdue, he has less than $1 million in the bank. Brian Kemp has over ten time as much in the bank. Kemp is running ads across the state, dominating the media markets. Perdue’s team is mostly dormant. Even the Abrams camp has fully set her sights on Kemp and is now ignoring the other Republicans. Outside groups that promised to show up for Perdue have stayed out instead. Even the outside groups supporting Kemp have, at this point, turned their sights on Abrams. That all suggests it will not be a long night in Georgia on May 24th for the gubernatorial primary.