Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan says Republicans need to appeal to voters, not lie about fraud and suppress the vote.
Georgia's Republican Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan announced on Monday that he wont seek reelection, saying he will instead launch an organization to "focus on healing and rebuilding a Republican Party that is damaged but not destroyed."
"The national events of the last six months have deeply affected my family in ways I would have never imagined when I first asked for their support to run for Lieutenant Governor in 2017," Duncan said in a statement. "Through all of the highs and lows of the last six months they have never left my side and are once again united behind me in my pursuit of a better way forward for our conservative party — a GOP 2.0."
Since the 2020 election, Duncan has been a vocal critic of his fellow Republicans, slamming the decision to focus on voter suppression legislation rather than on issues that matter to people's lives.
Back in March, Duncan scolded the GOP, saying that voter suppression laws like the one Georgia passed are "solutions in search of a problem": "Republicans don't need election reform to win, we need leadership."
And he told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Monday, "Any narrative from a Republican that the election was stolen, that it was a rigged election, is wasted energy. And it only continues to make the pathway to winning for Democrats even easier."
In announcing his decision, Duncan said his new organization will focus on "the value of conservative polices through genuine empathy and a respectful tone," saying that the effort "will no doubt be challenging but well worth it because this country and this party deserve better."
However, it will be a tough road for Duncan. A new CBS News poll shows Republicans believe the voter fraud lies Donald Trump and GOP lawmakers have fed them for months and want the kind of voter suppression legislation that Republicans across the country are passing.
Duncan is one of a number of Republican lawmakers who have faced a backlash after speaking out against Trump, the GOP's voter fraud lies, or the Republican-led voter suppression effort following the 2020 election.
Former Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ) retired rather than run for reelection in 2018 after he condemned Trump's "reckless, outrageous, and undignified behavior." Former Rep. Justin Amash of Michigan left the GOP, saying Republicans were "trapped in a partisan death spiral" thanks to Trump, and then decided not to run for reelection in 2020.
And on Wednesday, Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) was removed by her fellow Republicans from her leadership role in the House for speaking out against Trump. She was replaced by Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY), who has no qualms about spreading Trump's voter fraud lies.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.