Political Insider

An AJC blog about Atlanta politics, Georgia politics, Georgia and metro Atlanta election campaigns. Because all politics is local.

‘Too honest for politics.’ Kemp’s latest ad features a new pitch


Republican Brian Kemp’s attempt to soften his image ratcheted up Tuesday with a new ad that features his wife Marty recounting their 24-year marriage.  

Speaking direct to camera, Marty Kemp flashes pictures of the couple’s three daughters as she praises his “steady as a rock” approach to family life and politics. 

“When Brian decided to run for governor, I told him he was too honest for politics. It turns out, that’s what people like about him,” she says. 

It’s the Republican’s second ad since locking up his party’s nomination for governor and, like the first, it distances himself from the more provocative messages that helped fuel his rise to the GOP nomination for governor.  

In those spots, he pointed a shotgun toward a young “Jake” attempting to date his daughter, revved up a chainsaw to demonstrate his promise to cut regulations and vowed to “round up criminal illegals” in his pickup truck.

In this one, Marty Kemp - a former pre-K teacher - sits at a living room table sharing pictures through a photo album before she ends the 30-second spot with this line:  

“Brian’s a wonderful husband and a great dad. Take it from me: If you give him a chance, he’ll make you proud.”

Kemp’s campaign hopes this new round of ads broadens his appeal to suburban women who felt alienated by his scramble to the party’s flanks during the primary. 

Kemp has raced to recalibrate both his image and his message as he tries to broaden his appeal ahead of the November matchup against Democrat Stacey Abrams.

Along with sunnier TV spots, Kemp has also tweaked his position on the “religious liberty” debate and retooled how he casts his support for illegal immigration crackdowns.

Watch the ad here:

Read more recent AJC stories about the Georgia race for governor here:

With Labor Day, campaigns grow intense as Kemp, Abrams soften images  

Georgia candidates for governor have mapped own paths to victory  

A boundary feud colors a ruby-red county’s view of Kemp  

A new watchdog coalition targets Georgia ‘dark money’  

Kemp unveils tax-cut proposal aimed at Georgia’s military veterans  

Kemp: I will veto any legislation that veers from federal ‘religious liberty’ law  

Why Georgia Democrats aren’t putting Trump at center of November hopes  

Abrams takes aim at Republicans and a ‘paralyzing fear of complacency’  


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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.