Kelly Loeffler at her announcement

Photo: WSB-TV
Photo: WSB-TV

What Georgia politicos are saying about Kelly Loeffler 

The reaction was swift to news of Gov. Brian Kemp’s appointment of financial executive Kelly Loeffler to a U.S. Senate seat. 

Some politicians, including those who crowded around Kemp on Wednesday for the announcement, were fully supportive. Others took a more measured approach. And some flatly rejected her.  

Here is a snapshot of the reaction, broken into those three categories:

Supportive:

U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson:

“The same tireless work ethic that has helped her succeed in business will also help her succeed in serving Georgians and our nation. It has been the honor of a lifetime for me to serve this great state in the U.S. Senate, and my staff and I will work closely with Kelly to ensure a smooth transition.”

Related: Kemp taps Kelly Loeffler, financial exec, to US Senate seat

Related: Who is Kelly Loeffler?

Related: In farewell to Senate, Johnny Isakson stands for bipartisanship

U.S. Sen. David Perdue:

“My number one goal is to continue the best economic turnaround in U.S. history and focus on the needs of the people of Georgia. The only way to ensure that happens is to advance President Trump’s agenda in the U.S. Senate. While Senator Isakson leaves behind big shoes to fill, I look forward to working with Kelly Loeffler, my new partner in the U.S. Senate, to continue that positive change for Georgia and our country.”

U.S Rep. Barry Loudermilk:

"I look forward to working with Kelly Loeffler as the new U.S. Senator in Georgia’s Republican Congressional Delegation. Our delegation is known for unity and collaboration between its members in both chambers, and we will continue to work hard on the issues Georgians care about. While I do not know Kelly well, I do know Governor Brian Kemp and the strong conservative values he holds, and I trust his judgment in making this important decision."

Gov. Brian Kemp (right), House Speaker David Ralston, along with Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan (not in photo) held a press conference after the passage of SB 106, the "Patient's First" bill. Monday was the 36th legislative day of the 2019 Georgia general assembly. Bob Andres / bandres@ajc.com
Photo: Bob Andres

Measured:

House Speaker David Ralston:

“Governor Kemp has chosen the person he believes is most qualified to represent our values in Washington. I congratulate Ms. Loeffler and I look forward to getting to know her as we all work together to keep America great.”

U.S. Rep. Drew Ferguson, through a spokesman:

“The congressman looks forward to meeting our next Senator, learning more about her and her positions, and working together for the betterment of our great state.”

State GOP chair David Shafer:

“I congratulate Senator-Designate Kelly Loeffler. She has a noteworthy record of business and community leadership and a long history of supporting the Republican Party. I was impressed with her speech and encouraged by her remarks supporting President Trump. I look forward to working with her in support of the president, his agenda and re-election.”

U.S. Rep. Doug Collins, R-Gainesville, speaks at a House Republicans press conference in October after the House voted on a resolution outlining the rules for the next phase of the impeachment inquiry. (Anna Moneymaker/The New York Times)
Photo: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Opposed:

U.S. Rep. Doug Collins, who is considering a challenge: 

“The governor has the right to make this appointment, and I respect the decision he has made. I congratulate Kelly Loeffler on her appointment to serve our great state as Georgia’s next senator.

“I appreciate the support I have received from the president and many others, and right now, my primary focus is defending our president against partisan impeachment attacks.”

Democratic Senate candidate Matt Lieberman:

“The fact that Georgia politicians have been arguing over whether to appoint a Wall Street market maker or a far-right DC insider is a prime example of why Georgians are fed up with politics. That’s a bad way to pick a Senator, and it’s why the one we’re ending up with is so out-of-touch with Georgia families.”

State Sen. Nikema Williams, chairwoman of the Democratic Party of Georgia:

“Today’s appointment showcases exactly where Brian Kemp’s and Georgia Republicans’ priorities lie: with their own special interests, instead of the people of Georgia. After a reckless process where political games were put ahead of the public good, Kemp chose one of his own donors who will be nothing but a rubber stamp for today’s GOP agenda.”

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About the Author

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