Gov. Brian Kemp gets booed during speech at Georgia state GOP convention

Brian Kemp
Gov. Brian Kemp of Georgia.

  • Gov. Brian Kemp was booed at the Georgia state Republican convention on Saturday.
  • Many of the party faithful resent Kemp’s refusal to challenge the Georgia election results in 2020.
  • Former President Trump continues to animate the GOP base with his debunked election claims.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

GOP Gov. Brian Kemp of Georgia on Saturday elicited boos and jeers at the state party’s annual convention, reflecting the lingering resentment that many Republicans feel toward his certification of President Joe Biden’s electoral win over former President Donald Trump in the state last year.

As Kemp aimed for unity, many of his supporters tried to cheer for the governor, who is up for reelection next year and faces a spirited GOP challenge from former state Rep. Vernon Jones, a prominent Black surrogate for Trump.

During his speech, Kemp touted his support of anti-abortion legislation and the restrictive voting law that he signed into law in March, while also discussing his reopening of the state during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

But it was difficult to hear Kemp during parts of his speech, as the video taken by reporter Maya T. Prabhu of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution clearly shows.

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For months, Kemp and Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger were excoriated by Trump for not caving to his pressure campaign to overturn the November election results.

The Republican divide become even more pronounced after Democrats Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff defeated then-GOP Sens. Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue in the January runoff elections, respectively, which handed control of the US Senate to Democrats.

The governor, eager to focus on his own campaign and to dish out catnip to conservatives, laced into Democrats and what he called the “fake news media.”

“We must be strong and courageous,” Kemp told the raucous crowd. “They’ve got Hollywood. They’ve got billionaires in New York and California… That is why we have to be united as well and move forward together.”

Unlike several Republicans who spoke, Kemp declined to state that the 2020 election was inaccurate or “stolen,” according to the Associated Press.

The governor was able to overcome a resolution condemning his handling of the election process last year.

Raffensperger wasn’t as lucky. Republican delegates at the convention voted Saturday to censure him for his administration of the 2020 election, according to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

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