What Happened this Week in Georgia’s Chaotic GOP Senate Primary

July 9, 2021

Georgia’s Republican primary for U.S. Senate took another chaotic turn this past week with GOP criticism of Trump-anointed candidate Herschel Walker increasing after former President Trump announced Walker was planning to run. News of Walker’s impending announcement was met with mixed reactions from the current and potential field. 

  • Buddy Carter bows to Walker, but “actively preparing” just in case. Rep. Buddy Carter will pass on the U.S. Senate race and run for re-election if Herschel Walker enters the fray, noting that he’s “not interested in political suicide” by challenging Trump’s top choice in this high-stakes primary. As the AJC reports,  “it’s an extraordinary state of play for the Georgia GOP when a longtime Republican congressman who is also a former state legislator (in both the House and Senate) and local mayor needs the support of a former president who is actively attacking other top Georgia Republicans.” However, that hasn’t stopped Carter from “actively preparing” to join the crowded GOP field in the unlikely scenario that Walker passes. 
  • The GOP field & Kelly Loeffler aren’t deferring to Walker – promising the messy, expensive primary Republicans hoped to avoid. Even with Walker appearing to get closer to entering the race, Kelly Loeffler isn’t ruling out another run, and the handful of lesser-known GOP hopefuls in the race made it clear they plan to stay in – promising Republicans’ chaotic primary heads further off the rails in the months ahead. 

See more on the state of play here: Atlanta Journal-Constitution: Trump sees Walker as ‘unstoppable’ candidate, but many in GOP are wary; National Journal: Republicans suppressing their own voters in Arizona and Georgia; Atlanta Journal-Constitution: Buddy Carter’s waiting game has a name, ‘Herschel Walker’; Fox News: Potential Herschel Walker Senate run in Georgia raising some GOP concerns; CNN: Kelly Loeffler considers running again for Senate in Georgia; New York Magazine: It’s Tough to Prove You’re a ‘True Conservative’ in the Trump Era

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