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May 27, 2014 11:16 AM Kingston Leaps Into GOP Lead With Right Fist Held High

By Ed Kilgore

It’s still early in the GA GOP SEN runoff battle between “Republican Establishment” figures David Perdue (who finished first in the May 20 primary with 31% of the vote) and Jack Kingston (26% of the May 20 vote). But Kingston, who so far has run by far the more ideological campaign, seems to have taken an early lead thanks to perceptions of his as the most right-wing option at this point in the cycle.

A PPP survey for the progressive group Better Georgia showed Kingston up over Perdue 46/34. Kingston held an even more impressive 54/30 lead among self-identified “very conservative” voters. He’s now been endorsed by two of the most prominent conservative supporters of third-place primary finisher Karen Handel: RedState’s Erick Erickson and Atlanta Tea Party co-chair Julianne Thompson.

It will be interesting to see how Perdue copes with these early signs that he’s already been outflanked on the right by Kingston. A big showy ad on a hot button wingnut issue might be just what the political doctor ordered, but I’m not sure which one he’d be inclined to pursue.

The PPP survey, BTW, showed Democrat Michelle Nunn basically running even with either Republican. The more vicious the GOP runoff fight becomes, the higher the odds she can start the general election in the unaccustomed (for recent Georgia Democrats) position of favorite.

Ed Kilgore is a contributing writer to the Washington Monthly. He is managing editor for The Democratic Strategist and a senior fellow at the Progressive Policy Institute. Find him on Twitter: @ed_kilgore.

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