Perdue defeats U.S. Rep. Jack Kingston and faces Democrat Michelle Nunn in November
♦By Rich Shumate, Chickenfriedpolitics.com editor
ATLANTA (CFP) — First-time candidate David Perdue has taken a major step toward securing a seat in the U.S. Senate by narrowly winning the Republican runoff for Georgia’s open seat.
Perdue, a businessman from St. Simons Island, defeated U.S. Rep. Jack Kingston, 59, an 11-term congressman from from Savannah, with 51 percent of the vote to 49 percent for Kingston.
Perdue led after the first round of primary voting on May 20. Although Kingston secured endorsements from the third and fourth place finishers in the crowded primary, Perdue carried the vote-rich Atlanta suburbs in the runoff to claim victory.
Perdue will now face Democrat Michelle Nunn, the daughter of former Georgia U.S. Senator Sam Nunn. Despite the Peach State’s Republican tilt, recent polling has shown a potentially competitive race this fall.
Perdue made clear in his victory speech that he plans to tie Nunn, who is running for office for the first time, to President Barack Obama and Democratic leaders in Washington.
“We’ve got a mission in front of us. Our opponent should not be taken lightly,” he said. “This fall, we’re going to have a clear choice. And that is a choice we’re going to have to win for our kids and grandkids. We’ve had enough of this the last six years.”
Nunn, 47, was the CEO of the Points of Light Foundation, affiliated with former Presdent George H.W. Bush.
During the heated runoff campaign, Kingston ran ads attacking Perdue’s conservative bona fides on issues including the Common Core education standards and immigration.
Perdue criticized the veteran congressman for being part of the high-spending Washington establishment.
The seat opened up when U.S. Senator Saxby Chambliss decided to retire.