Republican former Sen. David Perdue, who is running for governor in Georgia, made several racist attacks at presumptive Democratic nominee Stacey Abrams, who is Black, saying she was “demeaning her own race” and should “go back to where she came from.”
“Did you all see what Stacey said this weekend? She said that Georgia is the worst place in the country to live. Hey, she ain’t from here. Let her go back to where she came from,” Perdue said at a campaign event Monday ― a day before voters head to the polls in the Georgia primary.
Abrams — who has lived in Georgia since she was in high school — in response to Republican Gov. Brian Kemp’s describing Georgia as the top state to do business said she is “tired of hearing about being the best state in the country to do business when we are the worst state in the country to live.” She pointed to the state’s high maternal mortality rate, high incarceration rate and low wages.
At Monday’s event, Perdue also accused Abrams of “demeaning her own race.”
“When she told Black farmers, ‘You don’t need to be on the farm,’ and she told Black workers in hospitality and all this, ‘You don’t need to be,’ she is demeaning her own race when it comes to that.”
It appeared Perdue was referring to comments Abrams made in 2018, in her then-campaign for Georgia governor when she said, “People shouldn’t have to go into agriculture or hospitality to make a living in Georgia. Why not create renewable energy jobs?”
In an interview with MSNBC’s Joy Reid late Monday, Abrams responded to Perdue’s remarks.
“Regardless of which Republican it is, I have yet to hear them articulate a plan for the future of Georgia… I can apologize all day for my phrasing, but I will never apologize for my meaning and that is that we mean to serve the people of Georgia and we mean to make Georgia better for everyone.”
Perdue is trailing in the polls in the Republican primary against Kemp, who is running for reelection.
Abrams narrowly lost the 2018 governor’s race to Kemp, in an election mired in a voter suppression controversy.