COLUMBUS, Ga. (WRBL) — The calendar may say it’s December, but politically 2022 started a month early.
Wednesday, Democrat Stacey Abrams announced she will seek the governor’s office, a race she narrowly lost in 20-18.
Brian Robinson, a Republican operative and former Communications Director for Gov. Nathan Deal, says get ready for what could be the wildest of political years.
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Republicans were waiting for Stacey Abrams to announce.
And none of them were surprised that she did it.
“Stacey Abrams is in such a powerful position that there is nobody in the Georgia Democratic Party that can challenge her,” Robinson said. “To get on the wrong side of her would be career suicide because she can kill you. She has the money. She has the influence. And she is going to be the one totally in control of the Georgia Democratic Party, at least for the next 12 months.”
In a normal world, Gov. Brian Kemp would have the same control of Georgia Republicans. But because of Kemp’s feud with former President Trump and possible primary challenge from former Sen. David Perdue, that’s not the case.
Everybody’s watching and waiting on Perdue.
“I am beginning to become numb to all of the intel we are getting that the announcement is imminent and it just doesn’t happen,” Robinson said. “We have been told over and over again that President Trump calls him everyday. In recent days, Sean Hannity on Fox News has called on Kemp to step aside for Perdue, saying he doesn’t think Kemp can win a General Election against Stacey Abrams.”
One thing is certain. Just like it was in 2020 with the closest state presidential race in the country and two U.S. Senate seats flipping from Red to Blue, Georgia is going to be the center of the political universe.
“If we have a Perdue vs. Kemp, and then the Republican vs. Abrams race, it is going to be wall-to-wall coverage of Georgia politics, not just in the Columbus media market and the Atlanta media market and Augusta, but in Washington, New York, LA and Chicago. Everybody is going to be talking about us,” Robinson said.
And Robinson says that’s creating Georgia politicians with star power. The four U.S. Senate candidates, Democrats Raphel Warnock and Jon Ossoff and Perdue and Kelly Loeffler as well as Secretary of State Brad Raffesperger are all in the national spotlight.
“Warnock, Ossoff, Perdue, Loeffler became national names in this country,” Robinson said. “And Abrams throughout this time has also become a national figure. Kemp has become a national figure because he opened the economy first during COVID, because of the controversy over the election and Trump’s attacks on him.”
And now the calendar changes but the players don’t.
“So, we have political celebrities in this cage match here in Georgia. Extraordinary,” Robinson said. “We have never had that in Georgia since Jimmy Carter was president. Now, we have all of these figures. Even Brad Raffensperger is a household name in this country.