Another apparent example has emerged of a Republican Party official being indirectly pushed out over vocal opposition to former President Donald Trump.
According to the Washington Times, Georgia Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan announced this week that he will not be seeking re-election next year.
“Conduct detrimental to the party”
The high-ranking Georgia Republican has adamantly opposed Trump’s assertion of widespread voter fraud in the state. He would have likely faced a hard-fought primary battle against a GOP challenger more aligned with the Trump agenda.
Along with Republican Gov. Brian Kemp and other state party leaders, Duncan publicly opposed the insistence by Trump and key allies that the November election was rigged in President Joe Biden’s favor, placing them in the same camp as other national GOP leaders like Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) and Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT).
For his part, the former president has vowed on several occasions to use his political influence to support primary challengers against the various Republicans who turned against him in one way or another.
Duncan was almost certainly near the top of that list following a string of statements challenging Trump’s rhetoric.
The lieutenant governor was also harshly criticized by pro-Trump Republican officials in his own state, including delegates for the 11th Congressional District Republican convention who passed a resolution rebuking Duncan’s statements as “conduct detrimental to the party.”
“I have no intention of slowing down”
He made it clear on Monday in a tweet that this would be his final term in office, going on to allude to his plans for the future.
“Today, I am announcing that I will not be seeking reelection for a second term as Lieutenant Governor,” he tweeted. “It is truly an honor to serve as Lt. Governor and I have no intention of slowing down on my policy over politics platform.”
Chief among the projects to which he will be devoting his “political energy” is the formation of a group called GOP 2.0.
Duncan asserted that those behind the project “will work hard every day reminding Americans the value of conservative policies through genuine empathy and a respectful tone.”
State Sen. Burt Jones, a Republican who was part of the group of state legislators interested in probing Trump’s voter fraud claims, is seen as a front-running in the campaign to replace Duncan.