Doug Collins leads Kelly Loeffler in Quinnipiac poll of Georgia voters

A Quinnipiac poll conducted Oct. 8-12 via live interviews of 1,040 likely Georgia voters found Rep. Doug Collins (R-Gainesville) leading appointed Sen. Kelly Loeffler (R) at 22 percent to 20 percent in the special election for a U.S. Senate seat.

Gov. Brian Kemp appointed Loeffler, a financial executive, to the Senate last year to serve the remainder of Republican Johnny Isakson’s term after he stepped down because of health issues.

She is also a co-owner of Atlanta’s WNBA franchise, and was chosen by Kemp even though President Donald Trump repeatedly urged the governor to pick Collins.

Loeffler raised about $2.2 million during the July-September fundraising period and personally loaned her campaign another $5 million. She has loaned her campaign $20 million since the start of the race. Collins raised about $2.3 million in the quarter.

With more than 20 candidates in the race, including a stiff challenge from Democrat Rev. Raphael Warnock, both Republican candidates are vying for a coveted spot in a likely Jan. 5 runoff between the top two finishers, if no one breaks 50% on Nov. 3.

With Election Day looming in just over two weeks, Collins is ramping up his outreach to Georgia voters. He released a new campaign ad accusing Loeffler of desperately hiding “the fact that she sold stocks after a private briefing and profited off the pandemic while too many Georgians lost everything.”

He picked up a major endorsement Tuesday from former White House national security adviser Michael Flynn who praised Collins for bravely standing with him and President Donald Trump during the Russia investigation.

“America and the citizens of Georgia need the ‘forged by fire’ leadership of Doug Collins in the United States Senate,” Flynn said in a statement Tuesday.

“As the deep state attacked our very way of life, Doug Collins was willing to stand in the breach, shoulder to shoulder with our president, Donald J. Trump,” said Flynn.

“Doug is fearless, tells it like it is, and always takes the path of truth against the vicious attacks and lies from the radical left,” the retired U.S. Army lieutenant general continued.

“America and Georgia need leaders and fighters in the Senate — not weak-kneed Republicans who bail when the going gets tough,” Flynn added. “That is among the many reasons I’m proud to endorse Doug Collins as the next U.S. Senator from the great state of Georgia.”

Collins said he was proud to receive the endorsement from a “true patriot” and “decorated veteran who served our nation honorably for over thirty years.”

“The Obama Administration and the DC Swamp did everything it could to try to ruin his reputation and smear his good name, but General Flynn never stopped fighting to expose the truth,” Collins said. “General Flynn is a hero to me and to so many Americans, and I couldn’t be more proud to have his support.”

He noted that Flynn ‘served our our country honorably in the U.S. Army for 33 years, retiring as a Lieutenant General. He served as President Donald J. Trump’s first national security advisor.

Collins’ campaign website touts him as a “conservative Republican proudly representing Georgia’s 9th Congressional District. He is nationally recognized as one of President Trump’s most steadfast defenders. A former pastor and Iraq War veteran, Doug also serves as a chaplain in the U.S. Air Force Reserve. Doug is married to the love of his life, Lisa, and they have 3 children.”