Election 2020: 14th district Republicans Cowan, Greene headed for a runoff

Construction executive Marjorie Taylor Greene and neurosurgeon John Cowan have advanced to the Republican runoff for the 14th Congressional District.

The northwest Georgia district is historically held by a Republican. It was an open race this year because of U.S. Rep. Tom Graves' surprise retirement.

Greene originally entered the contest for the 6th District, but dropped out and entered the contest for the 14th after Graves’ announcement. She has since moved to Rome.

Although Greene isn’t from the 14th District, she was able to draw voters in with her conservative ideals and outgoing personality, campaign manager Isaiah Wartman said.

“They see her, she’s just like them. She’s very personable and she’s talking about the issues at hand, whether that is stopping socialism or standing up to China or stopping antifa from coming to northwest Georgia,” Wartman said.

Greene has come under fire for embracing groups with extemist ties. She has also been criticized for social media posts that promote conspiracy group QAnon's theories.

Cowan lives and works in Rome. He has not run for public office before, and owns multiple businesses. One of his businesses, Cortex Toys, relies on trade and manufacturing from China.

He earned scrutiny after criticizing China’s response to the coronavirus outbreak while having business ties to the country.

Cowan said that he wanted his business to manufacture entirely in the U.S., but certain parts had to be created in China. He is in process of selling the company.

His deep roots in northwest Georgia draw voters to him, campaign manager Spencer Hogg said.

“John is the hometown candidate. There were a lot of great people running, and we are looking forward to unifying the district,” Hogg said.

The winner of the GOP runoff will face Democrat Kevin Van Ausdal in November. The information technology consultant who lives in Catoosa County had no primary opponent.

Read more: A running list of results in Georgia federal races

Also: Election 2020: AJC Election results June 9, 2020

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