OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.
Georgia Republican Gov. Brian Kemp, who had a falling out with former President Donald Trump in the aftermath of the 2020 election, is obviously not harboring any ill will.
The governor, who handily won reelection last year in a rematch with Democratic nominee Stacey Abrams, was recently discussing various political agendas in an interview, including the potential government shutdown, mass illegal immigration, and his thoughts on Trump going into the 2024 elections.
The then-president became angry at Kemp, whom he backed in 2018 after the governor refused to overturn election results in his state in 2020, and because he testified under subpoena in Fulton County Fani Willis’ investigation, which led to a grand jury indicting Trump and 18 other co-defendants.
“Despite all of that, despite all of his other trials and tribulations, he would still be a lot better than Biden. And the people serving in the administration would be a lot better than Joe Biden. And it has nothing to do with being a coward. It has everything to do with winning and reversing the ridiculous, obscene positions of Joe Biden and this administration that literally, in a lot of ways, are destroying our country,” Kemp told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
He also told the outlet that he believes Trump will win Georgia in the upcoming election, though he was still critical of Trump for claiming the election results in the Peach State were fraudulent in favoring Biden.
“But I also think he stands a very good chance of losing if he continues to talk about the stolen 2020 election. If he continues, like he’s done in the past, to attack other good Republicans who don’t agree with him 100 percent of the time, there’s a good chance he can lose the election,” Kemp said.
Meanwhile, Kemp was highly critical this week of Biden after the president “honored an activist on Transgender Day of Remembrance who was killed for allegedly firing upon law enforcement during a ‘Cop City’ altercation earlier this year” near Atlanta, Fox News reported.
“Honoring someone who died shooting at and critically wounding a State Trooper is disgraceful and unbecoming of the Office of President,” Kemp said in an exclusive statement to the outlet on Thursday.
“Joe Biden’s support for Defund the Police activists makes law enforcement less safe and puts more American lives in danger. In Georgia, we will always back the blue, and violent offenders who seek the destruction of our communities will feel the full weight of the law,” he noted further.
Nonbinary 26-year-old Manuel Esteban Paez Teran, otherwise known as “Tortuguita,” was killed during an alleged gunfight with police in Atlanta in January while showcasing opposition with others to the future Atlanta Public Safety Training Center.
On Jan. 18, Georgia State Patrol responded to the construction site to remove demonstrators against what critics call “Cop City,” a derisive term for the planned training center for police and firefighters. Authorities said Teran shot a trooper in the abdomen before law enforcement officials returned fire and killed Teran. Teran’s death prompted violent demonstrations in downtown Atlanta days later.
As for winning Georgia, the Biden campaign recently appeared to make it easier for the former president.
Biden’s campaign and Democratic donors do not appear to be willing to spend much time and money trying to win Georgia in next year’s presidential race, though Biden won the state and both U.S. senators are now Democrats.
The New York Times reported last month that Cliff Albright, executive director of the Black Voters Matter Fund, told the publication his impression from “Democratic donors and party leaders” is that Georgia is “not, like, first tier,” adding that “some early indications are that it’s not going to get top-level prioritization.”
Democratic donor and Democracy in Color founder Steve Phillips, who backed two-time Georgia gubernatorial loser Stacey Abrams early on and who remains a supporter, echoed Albright’s observations.
“For some inexplicable reason, a lot of people are leaving Georgia out of the top tier of states to focus on next year,” Phillips told the NYT. He added that “top donors” and “different advisors to billionaires” are telling him they “have a top tier list of five states, and Georgia is not in it.”