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GOP Challengers Step Up to Primary Marjorie Taylor Greene in Redrawn GA District

GOP Challengers Step Up to Primary Marjorie Taylor Greene in Redrawn GA District

Georgia Republicans seeking to defeat Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene in the upcoming midterm elections may benefit from new congressional maps approved by the GOP-controlled state Legislature that shift the district ever closer to the Atlanta region.

Greene’s current district stretches from the Atlanta exurbs to the outskirts of Chattanooga, Tennessee, is firmly Republican. But thanks to the new redistricting, it now picks up a slice of Cobb County, a core part of the metropolitan area and a one-time GOP stronghold that shifted steadily to the left during the Trump era. The changes mean that Greene may not be able to rely solely on the Trump-aligned base in the rural swaths of her district, and will have to compete for at least some moderate voters who may be less amenable to her antagonistic politics.

[Photo By Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images]
In her first term in Congress, Greene has emerged as one of the most prominent voices of the GOP’s far-right fringe, touting racist and antisemitic tropes, engaging in conspiracy theories about the coronavirus and vaccines while embracing Donald Trump’s lie that the 2020 election was stolen. As she seeks reelection promising more of the same, a small group of challengers for Georgia’s May 24th primary say they can deliver Republican values without “the sideshow” Greene brings wherever she goes.

“I think people in this district are mostly tired of her crap,” Charles Lutin, a Republican and retired physician trying to unseat Greene, said in an interview with the Associated Press. “It’s not anything like 95% are tired of her. But I think it’s a good strong majority,” said Lutin, who was an Air Force flight surgeon.

Another GOP candidate looking to primary Greene in November is Jennifer Strahan, who introduces herself to voters as a mother, a Christian, and a conservative. She usually skips over speaking about Greene. “You don’t always have to go around and tell people what she has done or said,” Strahan, the 35-year-old founder of a suburban Atlanta health care advisory firm, said in an interview. “That’s known.”

Greene may have the support of Trump now, but she doesn’t have the backing of all his voters in some corners of her territory, where there’s a keen sense of exhaustion from the nation’s overheated politics. The AP spoke to David Harvey, an 85-year-old retiree in Rome, Georgia, who voted for Trump in 2016, but said Trump so divided the party that it led many Georgia conservatives to stay home rather than keep voting Republican. He said he wouldn’t vote for Greene, who he believes “rode Trump’s coattails” to notoriety for all the wrong reasons. “You don’t want to be a national figure for having been stripped of your committee assignments,” Harvey said.

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