ATLANTA — Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue appeared to acknowledge President Donald Trump’s election loss on Monday night, pinning the defeat on voters’ rejection of Trump’s “personality.”
Speaking to roughly 50 attendees at a rally for his cousin, Sen. David Perdue (R-Ga.), the agricultural secretary said Trump’s loss came despite a strong economy during the president’s tenure.
“The America we’ve known and enjoyed for the past four years, with a dynamic economy – I think it’s a shame in November that people looked past all of the accomplishments of Trump’s administration and voted against his personality, or maybe the way he communicates,” said Perdue, a former Georgia governor.
Biden was the first Democrat to win Georgia at the presidential level since Bill Clinton in 1992. Strategists in both parties have pointed to Trump’s rhetoric, frequent falsehoods and bombastic style as a reason he sped up college-educated voters’ flight from the Republican Party. Winning over those voters in Atlanta’s suburbs was a key part of Biden’s victory.
Perdue’s comments came not long after members of the Electoral College around the country official voted for President-elect Joe Biden, following more than a month of false claims about voter fraud from Trump and conservative media figures, as well as failed lawsuits from Trump’s legal team and his GOP allies. Trump has declined to concede the election.
David Perdue is running against Democrat Jon Ossoff in one of two runoff elections in the state that will determine control of the U.S. Senate in the next Congress. The other election pits Republican Sen. Kelly Loeffler against the Rev. Raphael Warnock. Both elections are set for Jan. 5, though early voting began on Monday. Both elections are considered toss-ups.
During his appearance, Secretary Perdue largely echoed the GOP line about the all-or-nothing nature of the runoff elections: “This runoff election in Georgia is the most important election of our lifetime.”