And looming after the primary is a tough general election campaign. Senior Democrats expect Abrams to make another run for governor, and she’ll have a fundraising juggernaut mobilized behind her. The Fair Fight voting rights group she founded after her defeat has already raised more than $100 million.
Kemp is certain to continue to leverage the power of incumbency as 2022 nears. And a new law that allows state leaders to set up “leadership committees” that can raise unlimited campaign donations from supporters, including during the legislative session, could further boost his bid.
The Republican’s robust fundraising outpaced other incumbent governors. At this stage in their re-election bids, Roy Barnes raised roughly $4 million, Sonny Perdue collected $7.6 million and Nathan Deal amassed about $3.7 million.
At this point in the last gubernatorial race, GOP front-runner Casey Cagle took in roughly $2.6 million, while Kemp tallied about $1.7 million. Abrams, who was not yet a national Democratic figure, had collected about $500,000 in mid-2017.