ATLANTA — The Senate race between Kelly Loeffler and Doug Collins is getting more and more interesting by the day. And now a big political heavy hitter is weighing in.
U.S. Rep. Doug Collins announced last month that he is challenging sitting U.S. Sen. Kelly Loeffler for her seat in November.
Gov. Brian Kemp chose Loeffler, a political newcomer and wealthy businesswoman, to fill the seat left vacant by former Sen. Johnny Isakson. She was sworn in in January.
Collins has been one of President Trump’s most vocal defenders in the house.
Ads on TV have pitted Collins and Loeffler against each other in a growingly bitter race.
On Tuesday, former Speaker of the House and Georgia Rep. Newt Gingrich picked a side. In a news release, he endorsed Loeffler.
“Kelly Loeffler is exactly the type of political outsider we need in Washington. As a conservative businesswoman and strong supporter of President Trump, Kelly has a proven record of creating jobs and opportunities for Georgians,” said Gingrich. “I’m proud to endorse Kelly Loeffler for U.S. Senate."
“For decades, Speaker Gingrich has championed conservative policies, causes, and candidates,” said Loeffler. “He is a trailblazer, historic leader, and bold voice for our Party and values. I am honored to earn his strong endorsement and look forward to working together as we shake up the status quo in Washington and deliver real results for the American people.”
President Trump floated the idea of a compromise in the race.
“I know, Kelly, that you’re going to end up liking him a lot,” Trump said of Collins, whom the president called an “unbelievable friend.”
He added: “Something’s going to happen that’s going to be very good. I don’t know; I haven’t figured it out yet.”
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution spoke to Collins’ and Loeffler’s spokespeople about the remarks.
"We took it as the president preparing to offer Kelly Loeffler a job she's more suited for," Collins spokesman Dan McLagan said.
A Loeffler aide, Stephen Lawson, said Trump’s comments “speak for themselves” and that the senator was focused on supporting his agenda, “fighting for Georgians” and keeping her seat in the U.S. Senate.