20 January 2017

GA-Gov: A number of politicians have been mulling a run to succeed termed-out Georgia GOP Gov. Nathan Deal, and we can add a familiar name to the list. Ex-state Sen. Jason Carter, a Democrat who lost to Deal 53-45 in 2014, recently said that “Trump’s victory certainly makes it more likely for me to run.” Carter, who is a grandson of Jimmy Carter, raised a credible amount of cash during his last bid and probably did about as well as any Democrat could have done during the GOP wave. (Democrat Michelle Nunn, a heavily touted candidate and strong fundraiser, lost her Senate race that year by the exact same margin.)
So far, the only other Democrat we’ve heard is interested in a 2018 gubernatorial bid is state Senate Minority Leader Stacey Abrams. While Abrams hasn’t said much publicly about her plans, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution recently wrote that she was “all but certain to run.” Abrams would start out less-well known than Carter if both ran, but she could have an edge if race plays a role in the primary. Abrams is African-American while Carter is white, and in recent years, black voters have made up a larger proportion of the Democratic primary electorate: In the 2016 presidential primary between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders, 51 percent of voters were black and 38 percent white, according to exit polls.

FL-07: Freshman Democratic Rep. Stephanie Murphy pulled off a 51.5-48.5 win against ultra-complacent GOP incumbent John Mica last year, and Team Red is likely to make her a top target in 2018. State Sen. David Simmons tells Florida Politics that he’s considering challenging Murphy, but says he could also run for state attorney general or for nothing at all. Clinton carried this suburban Orlando seat 51-44, while Obama and Romney fought to a draw here four years before.


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