ATLANTA – Georgia Republicans and Democrats put positive spins on their 2022 election prospects Friday as the weeklong candidate qualifying period concluded at the state Capitol.
Both parties fielded candidates for every federal and statewide elective office.
A record-breaking 310 Democrats signed up to run up and down the congressional and legislative ballot, as the party looks to build upon its successes in 2020, when Democrats captured both of Georgia’s U.S. Senate seats.
“When I became chair of the Democratic Party of Georgia in 2019, we made it a priority to ensure Democrats were competitive in more seats all across Georgia – and this year’s qualifying numbers are a testament to those efforts,” U.S. Rep. Nikema Williams, D-Atlanta, said Friday.
But Republicans, too, were encouraged by the results of Qualifying Week.
“We qualified nearly twice as many candidates as the Democrats,” Georgia Republican Chairman David Shafer said Friday. “We have Republicans running for every statewide office and in every congressional district. Our Republican ticket this fall will be strong, wide and deep.”
Republicans will have to overcome divisions in the party over the response to President Donald Trump’s loss to President Joe Biden in Georgia in 2020.
At the top of the ballot, a slate of Republican candidates endorsed by Trump is running in the May 24 GOP primary against fellow Republicans, some of whom refused to join Trump’s bid to reverse the outcome of the election.
University of Georgia football icon Herschel Walker and former U.S. Sen. David Perdue top the Trump ticket. Walker is seeking the GOP nomination to oppose Democratic Sen. Raphael Warnock in November.
Perdue has Trump’s endorsement in his challenge to incumbent Republican Gov. Brian Kemp, whom Trump supported in 2018 but who would not go along with the then-president’s attempts to change the 2020 election results in Georgia.
Another race the former president is weighing in on is for secretary of state. Incumbent Republican Brad Raffensperger, who famously declined to try to “find” enough votes in Georgia to elect Trump, is being challenged in the primary by U.S. Rep. Jody Hice, R-Greensboro, with Trump’s blessing.
The Republican race for lieutentant governor also features a Trump-endorsed candidate. With incumbent Republican Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan – who also crossed Trump over the election – not seeking a second term, the former president has endorsed state Sen. Burt Jones against Georgia Senate President Pro Tempore Butch Miller.
Some statewide races are more crowded than others. Nine Democrats qualified this week to run for lieutenant governor. Five more Democrats are vying for commissioner of labor, a post being vacated by Republican Mark Butler.
On the GOP side, the top-ballot races for Senate and governor each feature five candidates.
Some candidates are unopposed for their party’s nomination, including Democratic candidate for governor Stacey Abrams and Republican state Sen. Tyler Harper, who is looking to succeed Republican Gary Black as agriculture commissioner.
Black is leaving that post to run for U.S. Senate.
Candidate list for Georgia
Here is the list of candidates who qualified for statewide offices this week.
Coastal Georgia county-by-county list here.
Sen. Raphael Warnock*
Georgia Agriculture Commissioner Gary Black
Former U.S. Sen. David Perdue
Georgia Rep. Erick Allen
Tyrone Brooks Jr.
Former Atlanta City Councilman Kwanza Hall
Georgia Rep. Derrick Jackson
Georgia Rep. Renitta Shannon
Georgia Sen. Burt Jones
Georgia Senate President Pro Tempore Butch Miller
SECRETARY OF STATE
Georgia Rep. Bee Nguyen
David Belle Isle
U.S. Rep. Jody Hice
Georgia Sen. Jen Jordan
Christian Wise Smith
COMMISSIONER OF AGRICULTURE
Georgia Rep. Winfred Dukes
Georgia Sen. Tyler Harper
Janice Laws Robinson
Georgia Rep. Matthew Wilson
STATE SCHOOL SUPERINTENDENT
James Morrow Jr.
Alisha Thomas Searcy
COMMISSIONER OF LABOR
Georgia Rep. William Boddie
Georgia Sen. Lester Jackson
Georgia Sen. Bruce Thompson
PUBLIC SERVICE COMMISSION – District 3 (Metro Atlanta)
PUBLIC SERVICE COMMISSION District 2 (East)
This story is available through a news partnership with Capitol Beat News Service, a project of the Georgia Press Educational Foundation.