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Trump endorses candidate in GA governor's primary

Trump's pick is Brian Kemp, a self-proclaimed "politically incorrect" candidate who has aligned himself closely with the President.

Posted: Jul 25, 2018 12:06 PM
Updated: Jul 25, 2018 12:40 PM

Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp will win the Republican nomination in the state's governor's race, CNN projects, setting up a general election battle against Democratic nominee Stacey Abrams in the fall.

It's another victory for President Donald Trump, who had backed Kemp over Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle in the final week of what turned out to be a nasty primary runoff.

The Georgia contest was already in the national spotlight: Abrams is a rising progressive star vying to become the nation's first black female governor. And Georgia's move leftward in 2016 -- Trump beat Hillary Clinton there by just under six percentage points -- means both parties are looking to the governor's race as a test of whether the state will be in play in 2020.

Cagle was long thought to be the frontrunner and finished first with 38.9% of the vote in May's primary to Kemp's 25.6%. But because Cagle fell short of 50%, they advanced to a runoff, which had become a contest between the two candidates to cozy up to Trump.

Polls showed the race had swung in Kemp's direction after the primary. Then, he got a major boost last week when Trump unexpectedly extended his "full and total endorsement" in a tweet.

"Brian is tough on crime, strong on the border and illegal immigration. He loves our Military and our Vets and protects our Second Amendment," Trump tweeted.

The President repeated that endorsement Tuesday morning.

"Today is the day to vote for Brian Kemp. Will be great for Georgia, full Endorsement!" he tweeted.

It's another successful endorsement for Trump, who recently backed Katie Arrington as she ousted South Carolina Rep. Mark Sanford in a primary and backed Alabama Rep. Martha Roby as she fended off a challenge in a runoff this month.

Cagle's campaign was undercut by a secret recording in which he told a former rival the GOP governor's race was a contest over "who could be the craziest" and admitted supporting "bad public policy" to undercut an opponent's fundraising.

Kemp bashed Cagle over the tape in television ads and debates and labeled Cagle "Pinocchio."

Some Republicans had worried that Kemp is a weaker candidate for November's general election than Cagle.

But Vice President Mike Pence -- whose chief of staff, Nick Ayers, is a veteran Georgia Republican operative -- visited the state on Saturday to campaign for Kemp.

At the rally in Macon, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported, Kemp said he was tired of "politically correct liberals like Stacey Abrams who are offended by our faith, our guns and our big trucks."

Pence said Kemp would bring "the same type of leadership that Trump brought to the White House."

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 265146

Reported Deaths: 5777
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto17807191
Hinds16967332
Harrison14298204
Rankin11280221
Jackson10976190
Lee9088145
Madison8619169
Jones6782118
Forrest6236124
Lauderdale6128192
Lowndes5564120
Lafayette5229101
Lamar507465
Washington4951125
Bolivar4149109
Oktibbeha409482
Panola388281
Pontotoc378560
Warren3698103
Monroe3693110
Marshall358570
Union357764
Pearl River3508106
Neshoba3499154
Leflore3122109
Lincoln307688
Hancock296362
Sunflower293075
Tate281162
Alcorn273554
Pike271081
Itawamba270063
Scott260849
Yazoo257156
Prentiss254554
Coahoma251555
Copiah250749
Tippah250150
Simpson243872
Leake238467
Marion225973
Grenada224272
Covington222473
Adams215371
Wayne215034
Winston207771
George204839
Newton200046
Attala197464
Tishomingo195661
Chickasaw189644
Jasper182538
Holmes172268
Clay167537
Tallahatchie157535
Stone152925
Clarke148662
Calhoun141822
Smith130726
Yalobusha123835
Walthall115037
Greene114529
Noxubee114126
Montgomery112736
Lawrence107617
Carroll106922
Perry105331
Amite102426
Webster97424
Claiborne89725
Tunica89321
Jefferson Davis88930
Benton86523
Humphreys84824
Kemper81020
Quitman7149
Franklin70717
Choctaw63813
Wilkinson59925
Jefferson57121
Sharkey45717
Issaquena1606
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 443009

Reported Deaths: 6662
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson649101007
Mobile31746574
Madison28413217
Tuscaloosa21566275
Montgomery20088332
Shelby19452132
Baldwin17333189
Lee13261107
Morgan12678142
Etowah12141181
Calhoun11555206
Marshall10487123
Houston9031164
Limestone838181
Cullman8296124
Elmore8243110
Lauderdale7946107
DeKalb7900107
St. Clair7876130
Talladega6523112
Walker6050183
Jackson603245
Colbert558194
Blount548586
Autauga540762
Coffee466964
Dale412785
Franklin377550
Russell358415
Chilton346873
Covington340880
Escambia339244
Tallapoosa3163109
Dallas313696
Chambers305470
Clarke303336
Pike265231
Lawrence255855
Marion254661
Winston234742
Bibb222948
Geneva213047
Marengo210531
Pickens200431
Hale186144
Barbour183438
Fayette178829
Butler174860
Cherokee166031
Henry160025
Monroe152621
Randolph146636
Washington142727
Clay130746
Crenshaw124845
Macon122837
Cleburne122125
Lamar120622
Lowndes116836
Wilcox108322
Bullock104628
Perry100518
Conecuh98022
Sumter90627
Greene77923
Coosa64018
Choctaw52124
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