Apr 13, 2022 - Politics & Policy

Trump spends $500,000 to defeat Brian Kemp

Trump Kemp

Photos: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images; Elijah Nouvelage/Getty Images

Former President Trump's Save America PAC has given half a million dollars to the Get Georgia Right PAC, which is working to unseat incumbent Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp.

Why it matters: This is Trump's first major financial investment in a 2022 cycle during which he's endorsed more than 100 GOP candidates up and down the ballot.

  • The news was first reported by Politico.

Catch up quick: Perhaps no politician has faced as much of Trump's wrath in his quest to overturn the 2020 election than Brian Kemp, who resisted the president's requests for a special legislative session.

  • Trump sharply attacked Kemp, vowed to campaign against him and followed through by endorsing Kemp's challenger, former Sen. David Perdue late last year.
  • Earlier this year, Perdue reported raising $1.1 million, while Kemp reported $12.7 million cash on hand.

Our thought bubble, via Axios' Lachlan Markay: The donation shows Trump is finally putting to work some of the massive sums he's raised since leaving office.

  • But it's telling that in a year when Republicans have a good shot at retaking the Senate and winning other key races up and down the ballot, Trump's first major foray into a 2022 political contest is coming at the expense of an intra-party critic.
  • It's an exercise in score-settling, as much about re-litigating the 2020 election as scoring political victories going forward.

The other side: In a statement, Kemp's campaign senior adviser Cody Hall said “David Perdue is going to need a lot more than $500,000 to distract from his unhinged rant attacking the Georgia State Patrol," referring to a Tuesday press conference in which Perdue said Georgia "needs to get our state patrol back to the elite level."

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