Political Insider

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As Georgia voters decide GOP nominee, national group fires at Abrams  


National Republicans unleashed a scathing attack ad against Stacey Abrams Tuesday as voters ending a bitter GOP runoff for governor. The Democrat, meanwhile, launched a pre-emptive strike against whoever emerges as the party’s nominee. 

The Republican Governors Association debuted a 30-second TV ad Tuesday calling the former House minority leader as the “most radical liberal to ever run for governor” and a “career politician funded by Nancy Pelosi’s California friends.” 

The ends with an image of Abrams sandwiched between Pelosi and Hillary Clinton, two wildly unpopular figures in GOP politics, with this closing line: “Stacey Abrams: Funded by Pelosi’s friends, loved by Hillary, too liberal for Georgia.”

The RGA’s ad is designed to provide some cover for either Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle or Secretary of State Brian Kemp after Tuesday’s runoff. The bitter, deeply personal duel has divided the GOP – and given Abrams nine weeks to raise cash and consolidate support as the two Republicans pummel each other. 

On the eve of the runoff, she tried to energize Democrats by rolling out a new “ethics and public integrity” plan. That included releasing two years of state and federal tax returns for 2016 and 2017.

Her previous financial disclosures showed Abrams incurred more than $50,000 in tax debt in 2015 and 2016. She has said she deferred her tax payments because she was helping to pay her elderly parents medical and living expenses, and that she is on a payment plan with the IRS. 

Abrams also pledged to publish her daily schedule, appoint an ethics officer for the governor’s office, strengthen protections against harassment for executive branch workers and hold two town halls in each of Georgia’s 14 congressional districts in her first year. 


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About the Author

Greg Bluestein is a political reporter who covers the governor's office and state politics for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.