David Perdue files paperwork to run against Sen. Raphael Warnock in 2022 Georgia Senate race

David Perdue files paperwork to run against Sen. Raphael Warnock in 2022 Georgia Senate race
Former Sen. David Perdue (R-Georgia).Zach Gibson/Getty Images
  • Former Sen. David Perdue filed paperwork to run against Sen. Raphael Warnock in 2022.
  • Perdue said he filed for the race as "a necessary legal step" in order to keep his options open.
  • Georgia is not a Democratic state, Perdue said, adding that he wants to help restore a GOP Senate majority.

Former GOP Sen. David Perdue of Georgia, who just last month lost his re-election bid to Democratic Sen. Jon Ossoff, on Monday made his first move to run against newly-elected Democratic Sen. Raphael Warnock in 2022.

Perdue, a reliable conservative and staunch ally of former President Donald Trump, filed paperwork with the Federal Election Commission to designate his political committee "Perdue for Senate" to be utilized for the upcoming campaign cycle.

Perdue announced his potential foray into the race on Tuesday, writing in a statement posted on Twitter that he filed the paperwork as "a necessary legal step" in order to keep his options open.

In the statement, Perdue insisted that Georgia was not a Democratic state and said that he wanted to help restore a Republican Senate majority.

"Georgia is not a blue state and yet, as I write this today, the people of Georgia represented by two of the most radically liberal individuals to ever occupy a seat on the hallowed floor of the United States Senate," he wrote. "They do not fairly represent most Georgians."


Perdue added: "We need to regain the Republican majority in the US Senate to change the direction of the country. Executive orders like the one that kills the Keystone Pipeline and destroys our energy independence will have devastating consequences on the most vulnerable among us."

While the decision is not final, sources reportedly told both Fox News and The Atlanta Journal-Constitution that Perdue is leaning towards a run.

In the aftermath of President Joe Biden's statewide win last November and the January 2021 runoff elections, which saw the dual losses of Perdue's seat and that of former Republican Sen. Kelly Loeffler, who was defeated by Warnock, Perdue's move is a big decision for the Georgia GOP as it seeks to rebuild.

Warnock, who was elected to fill the expired term of former GOP Sen. Johnny Isakson, will be running for a full term in 2022, which presents the opening for Perdue. Since Ossoff won a full six-year term in January, Perdue's old seat would not be open again until 2026.

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Perdue has roughly $5 million left from his unsuccessful reelection effort in his campaign account for a 2022 race, according to a federal elections report.

The wins by Warnock and Ossoff created a Senate split 50-50 between both parties and allowed Democrats to regain control by virtue of Vice President Kamala Harris's tiebreaking vote.

Before the January runoffs, Democrats had not controlled either of Georgia's Senate seats since former Sen. Zell Miller left office in 2005.

In the November general election, Perdue earned more votes than Ossoff, leading by a 49.7% to 48% margin, but was forced into a runoff election due to the state's unique electoral system. In accordance with Georgia law, the winner of any statewide election must earn at least 50% of the vote or the contest heads to a runoff.

The campaign between Perdue and Ossoff was tense, with Perdue bailing on a debate with Ossoff at the Atlanta Press Club a month before the election.


Ossoff called Perdue "a coward" for skipping the televised debate.

Perdue also stepped away from the campaign trail just days before the election after being exposed to a staff member who had contracted the coronavirus.

While Trump visited the state to campaign with Perdue and Loeffler, his appearances were defined more by grievances about his own fight against the presidential election results than for his support of the GOP senators.

In the end, Ossoff defeated Perdue by a 50.6% to 49.4% margin on the strength of support in the Atlanta metropolitan area and from the state's growing minority groups, especially among Black voters.

In the separate Senate special election, Warnock defeated Loeffler by a 51% to 49% margin.