Gwinnett a key battleground in Kingston-Perdue Senate runoff

Jack Kingston

Jack Kingston


David Perdue

You’ve seen the ads. Probably ad nauseam.

Jack Kingston is, according to opponent David Perdue’s TV spots, a “desperate,” untrustable career politician, an Obama supporter and a baby in a pink onesie.

David Perdue is, according to Kingston’s commercials, too liberal, “not the real thing” and a baby in a denim jacket.

On Tuesday, the ads will end — Georgia voters will decide which candidate for the U.S. Senate will advance past the Republican runoff and into November’s general election.

Gwinnett County will likely play a major role.

“We’ve tried to work Gwinnett very hard,” Kingston said this week.

“We’ve been working hard in Gwinnett,” Perdue echoed. “We did very well there in the primary.”

May’s seven-candidate primary saw Perdue, a first-time politician and former CEO of several big-name corporations, take nearly 31 percent of the state’s votes. Kingston, a longtime U.S. Congressman from Savannah, claimed about 26 percent.

Though overall third-place finisher Karen Handel won Gwinnett with more than 14,600 votes, Perdue’s 12,700 votes more than doubled Kingston’s tally in the county.

Following the primary, University of Georgia political science professor Charles Bullock told the Daily Post that Gwinnett may be a good indicator in Tuesday’s runoff.

Both campaigns have offices in Gwinnett, and both candidates included Gwinnett stops on their final-weekend tours of the state. Joined by Woodall, Kingston held a rally at the Arena at Gwinnett Center on Friday. Perdue visited Lawrenceville on Saturday.

“If Kingston makes inroads among Gwinnett voters, he will probably also be making gains among other Atlanta-area voters and that could bring him victory,” Bullock said. “… Getting votes from Handel supporters would be a major boost to the Kingston effort.”

Kingston was first elected to Congress in 1993. He points to traditional conservative causes like secure borders, Second Amendment rights, a strong national defense and the FairTax as key issues in the runoff.

He has recently hinted at the possibility of impeaching President Obama.

“We need a tested and proven conservative,” Kingston said.

Perdue’s primary endorsement is from radio talk show host Herman Cain. He has listed the national debt, the economy and jobs creation as foremost issues, along with term limits, tax reform and repealing Obamacare.

“This crisis was caused by career politicians, and I don’t think we can trust them to fix it,” Perdue said. “…It’s time to get back to the principles of the Republican party.”