Donald Trump's involvement in Georgia's elections may be hurting his election chances there should he run again in 2024.
The former president remains fixated on the state he won in 2016 and lost in 2020, and he is seeking vengeance against Republican officials who declined to help him overturn his loss.
But his endorsement hasn't helped David Perdue's chances in the GOP gubernatorial primary -- and voters are frustrated by his meddling, reported CNN.
"I wish he'd stay out of our elections," said retired police officer Chuck Horton, a Oconee County commissioner who supports Gov. Brian Kemp. "I did vote for him in 2020. There's no option on the other side. But I think he's wrong. I don't think the election was stolen, and he's not supporting the right man."
Kemp is expected to win easily over Perdue, a former GOP senator who has staked his candidacy on Trump's election lies, which some voters blame for Perdue and then-Sen. Kelly Loeffler losing their January 2021 runoff elections.
"We wouldn't be in this mess, in my opinion, as far as our senators and representatives, had he done one thing: If he had stayed off his Twitter for three days out of the seven -- just stayed off -- then he wouldn't have alienated his own supporters because of the things that he was saying, and we wouldn't be looking for 11,000 votes," said real estate broker Eddie Drinkard. "But he didn't have sense enough to do that."
Kemp may have rejected Trump's lies about fraud, but he has signed into law restrictive voting measures passed by the GOP legislature, and the governor's supporters say he's more conservative than the twice-impeached former president.
"Those comments are about himself, actually, not about the governor," said Carol Williams, who works in real estate in Athens. "I think that the former president has no skin in the game in Georgia. He does not understand what's best for our state. We have stayed open. We've done the right thing here in this COVID. His endorsements need to stay more so in Florida."
Martha Zoller, a talk radio host in Georgia who has worked for both candidates, said she advised Perdue to expand his campaign beyond Trump's grievances, but he ignored her and appears headed to another defeat.
"I'm not sure his heart was completely in it," Zoller said. "I think that Senator Perdue, at his core, ran more because he was angry about losing in 2020 than about what he could do as governor."
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