Georgia's Kemp raises $7.4M in 7 months of reelection bid

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp speaks during a news conference at Lockheed Martin on Thursday, Aug. 26, 2021, in Marietta, Georgia. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)

Brynn Anderson / AP Photo

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp said Tuesday that his main campaign committee raised more than $7.4 million in the seven months ending Jan. 31, giving him $12.7 million in cash as the Republican seeks reelection this year.

None of Kemp’s Republican primary rivals, including former U.S. Sen. David Perdue, former state Rep. Vernon Jones and Kandiss Taylor, have announced fundraising totals yet. Democrat Stacey Abrams also has not yet announced how much she raised.

Kemp has yet to file a full report with state officials, but his cash on hand rose by $3.5 million, showing he’s spending substantially in advance of the May 25 Republican primary. Kemp campaign manager Bobby Saparow said the numbers prove the incumbent “has the resources to win.”

Perdue may be relying on his endorsement from former President Donald Trump to counter those dollars. On Tuesday, he unveiled a new ad where Trump repeats his endorsement for the camera as Perdue starts a statewide bus tour.

“The Democrats walked over Brian Kemp. He was afraid of Stacey ‘The Hoax’ Abrams. Brian Kemp let us down. We can’t let it happen again,” Trump tells viewers.

Kemp is the latest Georgia candidate to report raising a large sum this election cycle. Last week, Democratic U.S. Sen. Raphael Warnock said he raised $9.8 million in the last three months of 2021, while Republican challenger Herschel Walker said donors gave him $5.4 million.

Other Republican Senate contenders reported Monday that they’re having trouble keeping up with Warnock and Walker.

Banker and military veteran Latham Sadler raised $607,000 in the last three months of the year, while state Agriculture Commissioner Gary Black raised $441,000. Contractor Kelvin King raised $232,000 and recent entrant Josh Clark raised $230,000. King saw a substantial decrease in available cash to $331,000, while Black’s cash pile dropped slightly to $919,00 and Saddler’s rose slightly to $1.7 million.

In Gwinnett County’s 7th Congressional District, where 6th District Democratic incumbent Lucy McBath has jumped in to challenge 7th District Democratic incumbent Carolyn Bourdeaux, McBath raised $746,000 to Bourdeaux’s $431,000. McBath has nearly $2.5 million in cash, while Bourdeaux has $2 million, promising what could be a very expensive Democratic primary.

In suburban Atlanta’s 6th Congressional District, recent entrant Rich McCormick raised $772,000, including a $400,000 loan to himself. The Republican McCormick switched from the 7th to the 6th after the 6th was redrawn to favor the GOP. Recent Republican primary entrant Mallory Staples raised $346,000, including a $250,000 loan to herself. Jake Evans raised almost $250,000 but has more than $1 million in cash, close to McCormick’s cash total of $1.15 million.

The 10th District Republican primary, with a broad field seeking to replace U.S. Rep. Jody Hice, saw multiple candidates self-funding their campaigns to stay competitive. Patrick Witt raised $177,000, including a $50,000 loan; Mike Collins raised $153,000, including a $65,000 loan. State Rep. Timothy Barr raised $119,000 without any self-funding. Collins finished the period with $750,000 in cash, far more than any other candidate.

In northwest Georgia’s 14th Congressional District, the celebrity of Republican U.S. Rep Marjorie Taylor Greene continued to bring in big money for her and her challengers. Greene raised nearly $1.2 million, giving her more than $3.5 million in cash. Democratic challenger Marcus Flowers raised more than $1.3 million but spent most of it, raising his cash pile to $1.5 million. Democrat Holly McCormack raised $634,000 but spent an even larger share than Flowers, increasing her cash on hand to $178,000

In southwest Georgia’s 2nd Congressional District, where Republicans nourish hopes of knocking off longtime Democrat Sanford Bishop, Republican A. Wayne Johnson raised $134,000, including a $100,000 loan to himself. The GOP’s Chris West raised $105,000. Bishop raised $183,000, leaving him with nearly $1.8 million in the bank.

Follow Jeff Amy on Twitter at