David Perdue Entering Georgia Governor Race Splits Bookmakers

Donald Trump ally and former Georgia senator David Perdue entering the Georgia gubernatorial race for 2022 has divided bookmakers.

On Sunday, it was widely reported that former Senator David Perdue would be running for governor, up against incumbent Brian Kemp in the primaries. Whoever wins that primary will face Democrat and voting rights activist Stacey Abrams in the election on November 8, 2022.

Perdue lost his Senate seat in a runoff against Democrat Jon Ossoff in January.

Georgia, long considered a ruby-red state, is now a key battleground for the Republicans and Democrats, after Democrat Raphael Warnock beat Republican rival Kelly Loeffler in another January runoff there and the Democrats won back the state from the GOP in the 2020 presidential election.

Many of Perdue's supporters say he can beat former Georgia Congresswoman Abrams in the gubernatorial race in 2022, while Kemp cannot. Kemp narrowly defeated Abrams in a previous gubernatorial contest in Georgia in 2018 by 55,000 votes.

Betfred believes that a Republican is likely to win next year's election, despite Abrams being a popular choice with punters.

Perdue has odds of 13-8 of declaring victory in 2022, while Kemp has 7-4 odds. Abrams has 2-1 odds, while Republican Vernon Jones has odds of 25-1.

Betfred spokesperson Peter Spencer told Newsweek: "I would expect us to take plenty of money on Stacey Abrams in the run up to the election as she was popular with punters in the 2018 Georgia Gubernatorial race.

"She was also a popular choice with punters in the Vice Presidential market in 2020, although she fell away towards the closing stages.

"Her being the Democrat candidate for Georgia Governor in 2022 is all but assured and we have her at 2-1 to go on and win the election.

"It is hard not see a Republican ultimately winning the race but seeing Republicans tear themselves apart in an ugly Primary will be a delight to Stacey and her campaign.

"The Republican fight will be fascinating but we have Perdue as slight favorite over Kemp just now. Trump's endorsement will be all but assured and the attacks on Kemp will only intensify over the campaign.

"Music to the ears for Stacey Abrams!"

Betway meanwhile ranks Abrams as favorite to win with odds at 8-11. She is followed by Kemp with 7-4 and then Perdue at 11-4.

"Whilst a Republican split may help Abrams, a robust contest identifying the best candidate may help them in a region in which their support is in danger of drifting away," Chad Yeomans, spokesperson at Betway told Newsweek.

BetOnline marks Perdue as the clear favorite, due to former President Donald Trump's endorsement.

"Its been a dramatic weekend in the betting markets for Georgia's gubernatorial race, driven first by Stacey Abrams' declaration on the Democratic side and now David Perdue entering the race, setting up a dual with incumbent Governor Brian Kemp for the Republican nomination," Paul Krishnamurty, BetOnline.ag political trader, told Newsweek.

"Bettors have been favoring the Trump ally Perdue, wagering that the former president's endorsement will prove critical. From +120 (6-5), he's now the clear favorite at -200 (1-2) for the Republican nomination and +100 (1-1) to become governor. We believe that he has a better chance of beating Abrams—whose odds drifted out to +170 (17-10) from +150 (3-2) upon this news—because Perdue is likelier to consolidate the GOP vote. In contrast, a Kemp candidacy could well see Trump supporters stay at home and, were he to win the primary, Abrams chances and odds would improve."

Ladbrokes has Perdue as favorite at 11-8, followed by Abrams at 6-4, and Kemp at 3-1. Jones is at 16-1, while Shane T. Hazel, the libertarian who spoiled the Senate runoff for Pedue and Ossoff, is 100-1.

But Betfair's odds are on Abrams to win. The former Representative has odds of 5-4, trailed by Perdue at 15-8.

The news that Perdue will run, first reported on Sunday by Politico, divided Republicans. Several reports said that Perdue was persuaded by Trump to run against Abrams, after Kemp refused to help block the 2020 election results in the state, which helped Democrat Joe Biden beat Trump to win the presidency.

The news came only days after Abrams launched her campaign last week.

Perdue's campaign website went live late on Sunday evening, urging Georgia voters to "join our team to stop Stacey Abrams."

Please note, political betting in the U.S. is considered illegal, but it is legal in Europe and many other countries.

David Perdue & Stacey Abrams
Former senator from Georgia David Perdue is due to face Democrat and former Georgia Congresswoman Stacey Abrams in the 2022 Georgia Gubernational election in November 2022. Getty

Update 12/07/21, 2:27 a.m. ET: This article was updated to include quotes and odds from BetOnline.