Former Sen. David Perdue (R-GA) will not challenge Sen. Raphael Warnock (D-GA) in 2022 after all, he said in a new statement.
“I am confident that whoever wins the Republican primary next year will defeat the Democratic candidate in the general election for this seat, and I will do everything I can to make that happen,” he said.
Perdue filed as a candidate for the race a week ago, but said at the time that he was still weighing his options. He lost reelection to Sen. Jon Ossoff (D-GA) in the January runoff, and was considering challenging Warnock for the state’s other seat next year. Warnock, who toppled former Sen. Kelly Loeffler (R-GA) in the same runoff cycle, is currently finishing the end of the retired Sen. Johnny Isakson’s (R-GA) term.
Warnock shrugged at the Perdue news. “I am prepared to defeat whatever Republican they come up with,” he told reporters Tuesday afternoon.
Perdue, who signaled that he was considering legally challenging the election results in his runoff before gracelessly conceding, made oblique reference to the GOP’s baseless insinuations of widespread voter fraud in his Tuesday statement.
“I am hopeful that the Georgia general assembly, along with our statewide elected officials, will correct the inequities in our state laws and election rules so that, in the future, every legal voter will be treated equally and illegal votes will not be included,” he said.
Under the guise of non-existent widespread voter fraud, the GOP-majority Georgia legislature has unveiled a battery of voter suppression bills. It’s likely backlash after Democrats netted both Senate seats plus the state’s electoral votes in the Presidential contest. It also mirrors a nationwide wave of similar bills penned by Republican state lawmakers that take particular aim at mail-in voting, which skewed Democratic during the pandemic elections.
This post has been updated.