Georgia Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan declaring this week that he won’t seek a second term prompted conservative activist Debbie Dooley and her friends to celebrate and, she said, to convey a message of “good riddance.”
Republican Jeanne Seaver, who hopes to replace Duncan next year, said the outgoing politician couldn’t even declare his future plans without taking a cheap shot at supporters of former U.S. President Donald Trump.
Duncan’s announcement has prompted other Peach State politicians to consider plans of their own.
Dooley told The Georgia Star News Monday that Duncan “saw the handwriting on the wall and realized there was no way he would ever win a race in Georgia — again.”
Dooley went on to say Duncan betrayed Trump and undermined everything the former president did.
“The grassroots won. We put so much pressure on him that we have the power — when we are willing to use it — and we used it,” Dooley said.
“The power belongs to the people. We have to be willing to use it. Geoff Duncan should move to a state like California.”
Duncan said in an emailed press release Monday that he will transition his political energy and build an organization that he called GOP 2.0 on a national level.
“This organization will focus on healing and rebuilding a Republican Party that is damaged but not destroyed through a strategy called P.E.T. Project,” Duncan said.
“GOP 2.0 will work hard every day reminding Americans the value of conservative Policies through genuine Empathy and a respectful Tone. This effort will no doubt be challenging but well worth it because both this country and this party deserve better.”
When asked about that, Seaver said “he makes us all sound like we are non-essentials and lost souls and a bunch of crazies.”
“If he thinks that of the people who elected him then shame on him,” Seaver said.
Seaver said she suspects Duncan polled his reelection chances next year and learned he didn’t fare well.
“The fact he is talking about 2.0, and his ultimate goal is to take out any candidates who support Trump or any Trump supporters and getting folks off the Trump Train is totally totally totally disconnected with Georgians,” Seaver said.
Georgia State Senate Majority Whip Steve Gooch (R-Dahlonega) told The Star News Tuesday he might also run for lieutenant governor, and he will decide one way or the other within the next two weeks.
Duncan (R-Cumming) told a nationally-televised audience in March that his fellow Republicans should move past Trump and forget passing certain election reform bills. Duncan said this on NBC’s Meet the Press.
“We passed four election reform bills two weeks ago in the senate. As you mentioned a second ago, there is a lot of solutions in search of a problem. Republicans don’t need election reform to win. We need leadership,” Duncan said at the time.
“Millions of Republicans are waking up realizing Donald Trump’s tone and strategy is un-winnable in forward-looking elections. We need real leadership and new focus, GOP 2.0, and includes moderate in the middle to get us to the next election.”
Duncan went on to say that what he called “misinformation” about the November 2020 elections hurts the GOP.
“January 6 was a pivot point for this country and party. We got four years to win back the White House. We are not going to do it with a divisive tone,” Duncan said.
Duncan faced long odds at a chance for reelection. His approval rating among Georgia Republicans has plummeted in the past four months. Several prominent Georgia Republicans were openly considering primary challenges to Duncan.
– – –