Ted Terry, the progressive mayor of Clarkston, Ga., launched his campaign Wednesday to unseat Republican Sen. David Perdue (Ga.).
The 36-year-old Democrat, known to his constituents as the “millennial mayor,” has embraced several progressive platforms for his town, including decriminalizing marijuana, mandating a $15 minimum wage and limiting Clarkston’s cooperation with federal deportation officers.
Terry said he launched his campaign against the one-term incumbent as an effort to bring similar ideas to the Senate.
Today I launched my campaign for the United States Senate – this is a people powered movement! As you can imagine organizing statewide ain’t cheap! Please donate today and help us build up our grassroots movement in every county! Donate here – https://t.co/lHdj1mXrJW pic.twitter.com/ek1AIWZL8K
— Ted Terry (@tedterry1) July 10, 2019
“Campaigns are ways we can move the needle on policies,” Terry told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
“I’m running on my record. We were on the cutting edge in Clarkston,” he added. “My record as mayor has always been to challenge the establishment and disrupt the system, and being elected to the U.S. Senate would be the biggest threat to the established order.”
Terry entered the national spotlight after being featured on season two of the hit Netflix show “Queer Eye.” He pointed to his experience in an interview with the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
“If people want to know who I am, watch that 55-minute episode of Queer Eye,” he said.
Ted Terry is an exceptional mayor who fosters a sense of belonging and warmth. We loved watching him explore his confidence with the Fab 5. If there’s one thing we’ll always take away from this episode, it’s that strength and compassion can make a blended community stronger ❤️ pic.twitter.com/CLF4QRCTxx
— Queer Eye (@QueerEye) March 10, 2019
The National Republican Senatorial Committee hammered Terry over his progressive policies in a press release slamming his campaign announcement.
“Terry’s entry into the U.S. Senate race further highlights how the Georgia Democrat primary is following in the footsteps of the socialist sprint of the 2020 Democrat presidential candidates,” said NRSC spokesperson Nathan Brand.
“The Democrat primary field continues to grow as each candidate tries to outflank each other from the left, further away from mainstream Georgia values. Meanwhile, David Perdue continues to build on his positive record of being an outsider who delivers results for all of Georgia.”
Terry joins one other Democratic candidate, former Columbus Mayor Teresa Tomlinson in the race to take on Perdue. However, Several others are reportedly exploring bids of their own, including Sarah Riggs Amico, who lost last year’s lieutenant governor’s race, and former House candidate Jon Ossoff.
The Democratic Party failed to get its chosen candidate, Stacey Abrams, to jump into the race. Abrams helped electrify the base and emerged as a fundraising juggernaut in the 2018 gubernatorial race, which she narrowly lost. She was repeatedly courted by Senate Minority Leader Chuck SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerSenate Democrats launching digital ads against GOP senators on ObamaCare lawsuit Susan Collins says she doesn’t regret Kavanaugh vote ‘in the least’ The national security risk no one is talking about MORE (D-N.Y.) to challenge Perdue, but announced in April she didn’t believe the Senate was “the best role for me in this battle for our nation’s future.”
Following Abrams’s 2018 momentum and shifting demographics, Democrats view the Georgia seat as one of several possible pickup opportunities to chip into Republicans’ 53-47 majority in the Senate.
Perdue won his seat by a 53 to 45 percent margin in 2014, while President TrumpDonald John TrumpGraham open to investigating Acosta-Epstein plea deal Sustaining progress with Mexico on migration Government to issue licenses for business with Huawei MORE won Georgia by a narrower margin, 51 to 46 percent, in 2016.
“The American people have all the evidence they need,” Terry told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “What we’ve seen from the president and Sen. Perdue is enough to defeat them in 2020.”
The Cook Political Report, a nonpartisan election handicapper, rates the race as “Likely Republican.”