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ELECTION RESULTS: Collins defeats Jones in GOP runoff for 10th Congressional District
Jackson native, businessman pulled 75% of vote districtwide; will face Johnson-Green in November
Mike Collins
Candidate Mike Collins touted his support of former President Donald Trump as he spoke to Newton Republicans on Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2022. - photo by Taylor Beck

COVINGTON, Ga. — In the race for Georgia's 10th Congressional District, Jackson businessman Mike Collins defeated Vernon Jones for the GOP nomination by a landslide in the Tuesday primary election runoff.

With about 95% of district precincts reporting Tuesday night, Collins, who was recently endorsed by Gov. Brian Kemp, had pulled 29,672 total votes (75%).

"First off, I want to thank each and every person across the 10th district who supported us, trusted us and voted for us in this election," Collins said in a statement. "This was a victory for the hardworking people of the 10th district — and I’m honored to have the opportunity to represent them and fight for them every day in Washington. Over the coming months, we will continue working hard, traveling this district, and preparing to go deliver results to overhaul D.C. and ensure every Republican across the state wins in November. On behalf of Leigh Ann and our entire family, thank you, and God bless!"

Jones, the former DeKalb County government CEO and state house representative being backed by former President Donald Trump, had only received 10,083 votes (25%). He conceded to Collins just before 9 p.m. as votes were still being tallied.

"While tonight didn't go the way we planned, the fire in my belly for the America First movement will never be extinguished," Jones said in a tweet. "All eyes towards November. Georgia is not a BLUE state. It was a stolen state. And we're going to take it back."

In Newton County, Collins prevailed with 1,623 of 2,163 total votes (75%). Jones pulled only 540.

In the May 24 primary, which included a field of eight candidates, Collins lead the way with 26% of the vote, and Jones followed closely behind with 22% to force the runoff. 

Before the runoff, Collins and Jones have traded blows along the campaign trail. Most recently, Jones filed a police report last week with the Morgan County Sheriff’s Office after the Collins campaign made a post to social media that Jones believed encouraged “violence against Jones depicting both a rape whistle featuring Jones’ name and a loaded gun.” However, Chief Deputy Keith Howard said the post did not “rise to the level of a criminal act.”

The post featured a photo of a red "rape whistle" with the address of a website that details information on a series of charges of intimidation and sexual misconduct made against Jones while he served as CEO of DeKalb County government and in the Georgia House.

The social media post contained a photo of the whistle with Jones' name — which was paired with a photo of a pink handgun below the words, "Although some use a rape whistle for protection against sexual assault, a 9mm is the more preferred form of protection.”

Collins' campaign has worked to increase voters' negative view of Jones by sending mailers to voters in the congressional district that list a series of personal and work-related sexual and homophobic allegations made against Jones over his three decades in state and county offices — including a 2005 rape allegation.

Meanwhile, Jones sought to link Collins' desire for election to merely wanting to follow his father, longtime congressman Mac Collins, into office. 

The Jones campaign also tried to link a personal loan Collins made to his campaign with federal COVID-relief money Collins' trucking company received in 2020, which Collins denied.

Collins will now move on to face Tabitha Johnson-Green in the Nov. 8 General Election after she defeated Jessica Allen Fore on Tuesday night for the Democrat nomination.

Johnson-Green won 8,355 total votes (63.48%), including 551 votes out of 739 total (74.56%) in Newton County.

The 10th Congressional District includes most of Newton County and 17 other counties. The seat was given up by U.S. Rep. Jody Hice, R-Greensboro, who chose to make a run for the Republican nomination for Georgia Secretary of State but was defeated in the primary by incumbent Brad Raffensperger.

Runoff results for statewide offices on the ballot included:

Lieutenant Governor (D): Charlie Bailey (62.63%) and Kwanza Hall (37.37%). Bailey will face Republican Burt Jones and Libertarian Ryan Graham in the General Election.

Secretary of State (D): Dee Dawkins-Haigler (23.6%) and Bee Nguyen (76.4%). Nguyen will face incumbent Republican Brad Raffensperger, Libertarian Ted Metz in the General Election. Brenda Nelson-Porter will be a nonpartisan write-in candidate. 

Commissioner of Insurance (D): Raphael Baker (36.41%) and Janice Laws Robinson (63.59%). Robinson will face incumbent Republican John King in the General Election.

Commissioner of Labor (D): William "Will" Boddie Jr. (62.46%) and Nicole Horn (37.54%). Boddie will face Republican Bruce Thompson and Libertarian Emily Anderson in the General Election.

News Editor Tom Spigolon contributed to this report.