Karl Rove overseeing Republican financial effort to hold Georgia Senate seats
Karl Rove, the longtime GOP operative and former adviser to George W. Bush, is heading up Senate Republicans’ fundraising efforts for the Georgia runoff elections.
Rove has been tapped as the finance chairman for the Georgia Battleground Fund, a joint fundraising effort by the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) and the campaigns of GOP Georgia Sens. David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler, a person familiar with the effort confirmed to The Hill.
Other veteran GOP operatives involved in the effort include Nick Ayers, a former chief of staff to Vice President Pence, and former Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, Politico reported on Monday.
Republicans and Democrats are expected to pump hundreds of millions of dollars into the two runoffs in Georgia over the next eight weeks as they battle for control of the Senate. The NRSC, the GOP’s Senate campaign arm, announced last week that the Georgia Battleground Fund had raised $32 million over a six-day period.
Republicans have so far secured 50 seats in the upper chamber, meaning that Democrats will have to flip both Loeffler’s and Perdue’s seats to win control of the Senate, with Vice President-elect Kamala Harris breaking the tie.
Georgia has long been considered safe territory for Republicans; voters there haven’t elected a Democrat to the Senate since 2000. But Democrats have grown increasingly optimistic about their chances in recent years as the state’s rapidly changing demographics and fast-growing population have altered its political landscape.
President-elect Joe Biden narrowly carried Georgia in the Nov. 3 presidential election, becoming the first Democratic White House hopeful since 1992 to win the state.
Perdue is slated to face Democrat Jon Ossoff in one of the Jan. 5 runoffs. Neither candidate managed to clear the 50 percent threshold needed for an outright win in this month’s general election.
Loeffler, meanwhile, will go head-to-head with Democrat Raphael Warnock, who emerged as the top vote-getter in the Nov. 3 election but still fell short of the 50 percent threshold. Loeffler finished the general election in second place, beating out fellow Republican Rep. Doug Collins (Ga.).