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Democrats see Georgia as crucial to flipping control of the U.S. Senate, and they’re eager to build on their recent successes across metro Atlanta’s suburbs. But Republicans hope an election-year surge will fuel Perdue’s re-election.
Read more: A Stacey Abrams-less Georgia Senate race is about to heat up
So far, only one major Democratic contender is in the race: Former Columbus Mayor Teresa Tomlinson, who reported over the weekend that she's raised about $520,000 since she entered the race in April. She also loaned her campaign another $30,000.
The contest is expected to get more crowded. Sarah Riggs Amico, who ran unsuccessfully for lieutenant governor last year, is likely to jump in the race within weeks. And former 6th District candidate Jon Ossoff is among other potential contenders eyeing the seat.
Republicans are giddy that higher-profile contenders passed on the race. Gubernatorial runner-up Stacey Abrams and former acting U.S. Attorney General Sally Quillian Yates both passed on a bid, frustrating Democrats aiming to attract a national figure to challenge Perdue.
The solid numbers come as little surprise: Perdue has long been a formidable fundraiser, building upon the same network that helped elect his first cousin, ex-Gov. Sonny Perdue.
A former Fortune 500 chief executive, Perdue emerged from a loaded Republican primary in 2014 thanks to an outsider-themed message. He’s since become a stalwart ally of Trump and Gov. Brian Kemp, and both are certain to help his re-election bid.
Read more: Who could challenge Sen. David Perdue in 2020