Two incumbent House Democrats will compete in a primary for a newly drawn Georgia district on Tuesday, setting up a clash between different factions of the party.

After Georgia’s Republican-led redistricting process, Rep. Lucy McBath announced she would vacate her 6th District seat to run in the newly drawn 7th District instead, where fellow Democratic Rep. Carolyn Bourdeaux would also compete. Georgia’s redistricting process left the suburban Atlanta 6th District friendlier to Republicans than when it elected McBath and the 7th District friendlier to Democrats. Both congresswomen previously flipped their seats from Republicans.


Bourdeaux is more of a centrist Democrat than the progressive McBath, and their primary has mirrored similar divisions playing out in the broader Democratic Party. Bourdeaux has faced activist criticism for not fully embracing President Joe Biden's "Build Back Better" agenda. She is also a member of the Problem Solvers Caucus and the Blue Dog Coalition.

McBath was elected in 2018 after becoming a gun control advocate following the death of her son, Jordan, who was murdered in 2012. She had an upset victory over Republican incumbent Karen Handel.

Although polling in the race is sparse, McBath argued at a recent debate that she is the front-runner in the race “because people know me; they know the work that I've done."

"They know I have worked diligently on their behalf in Washington, and I'm running in this race because I simply believe that we should not allow Gov. Kemp, the Republican Party, or the NRA gun lobby to dictate who represents our communities in Washington," McBath said.

At the same debate, Bourdeaux defended her record by arguing she has worked on issues important to Democrats, pointing to her work to expand Medicaid in Georgia, among other causes.

"I ground everything in the needs of the people of this district, and we have a lot of them," Bourdeaux said. "We also need infrastructure, and we need transit, we need wastewater. The infrastructure bill was very, very important to our community because congestion is the No. 1 barrier to economic development."

State Rep. Donna McLeod is also running for the seat and has argued that, unlike her two rivals, she actually lives in the district.


The new 7th District is considered a safe Democratic seat, meaning the winner of the primary will likely be elected to Congress in the fall. The primary follows a Republican member-on-member primary in West Virginia, in which Rep. Alex Mooney defeated Rep. David McKinley.