Stacey Abrams, the Democratic nominee for Georgia governor, said that incumbent Gov. Brian Kemp (R) doesn’t deserve accolades simply for refusing to go along with former President Trump’s efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election in the state.
“What was the alternative?” Abrams said in an interview with podcast host Kara Swisher that aired on Thursday. “The alternative was committing treason. This was not an act of courage. He simply refused to commit treason.”
Kemp has faced Trump’s wrath ever since he refused to overturn President Biden’s victory in the state. Trump, whose efforts in Georgia are now the subject of a grand jury probe in Fulton County, unsuccessfully attempted to oust the incumbent governor in this year’s Republican primary, recruiting former Georgia Sen. David Perdue to oppose him.
Kemp’s refusal of Trump has earned him high praise on the national level, but Abrams, whom Kemp defeated for his current office four years ago, said she did not find the move particularly admirable.
“You were not elected by Donald Trump,” she told Swisher. “You were elected by the people of Georgia. Your job is to serve the needs of the people of Georgia, and so refusing to essentially negate their voices is not an act of courage. It’s an act of competence.”
“The national veneer he’s been able to assume is what is the most troubling to me,” Abrams added.
Kemp has sought to avoid testifying before the grand jury in Fulton County’s criminal investigation into Trump and his allies’ efforts to meddle in the election. A judge in August refused to quash a Kemp subpoena but postponed the testimony until after the election.
Abrams is currently trailing the governor in the polls. A recent survey from The Hill and Emerson College found Kemp with a 5-point lead over Abrams, the same gap found in an InsiderAdvantage-Fox 5 poll. Another poll from Fox News earlier this month showed Kemp leading by 7 points.