BUFORD, Ga. — Senator Kelly Loeffler of Georgia has spent many weeks, and many of her own millions of dollars, trying to prove she is a more conservative candidate than her bitter rival, Representative Doug Collins, a fellow Republican. In fact, it almost seemed that Ms. Loeffler ran out of room to run rightward when, last month, she welcomed the endorsement of Georgia’s best-known proponent of the QAnon conspiracy theory, Marjorie Taylor Greene, a Republican congressional candidate.
But on Monday, Mr. Collins, who staunchly defended President Trump during his impeachment trial, found a way to at least match Ms. Loeffler in terms of right-wing sizzle when he arranged a campaign event that featured a joint appearance with Roger J. Stone Jr., Mr. Trump’s former campaign adviser who was convicted of numerous felonies related to his obstruction of a congressional investigation into potential ties between Mr. Trump and Russia. In July, Mr. Trump commuted Mr. Stone’s sentence.
Dressed in a dark gray double-breasted flannel suit, Mr. Stone, 68, appeared with Mr. Collins Monday afternoon in Buford, a city in the Atlanta suburbs, outside of a rambling old house currently used as a law office. A few dozen people, mostly white and unmasked, gathered around and cheered while Mr. Stone put on an abbreviated version of the Mr. Stone show. He claimed he was the victim of a “Soviet-style show trial.” He made a few lewd puns based on the names of Democrats in Congress, and he exhorted everyone to vote for Mr. Trump and Mr. Collins in what he said was going to be a close race.
Mr. Collins, 54, has struggled to pull away from Ms. Loeffler as the two Republicans fight for a place in a likely January runoff against the Rev. Dr. Raphael Warnock, a Democrat who polls suggest is leading a crowded open field in the Nov. 3 special election.
Though Mr. Collins, a member of the House of Representatives since 2013, has more political experience, Ms. Loeffler, who was appointed to the Senate seat less than a year ago, is one of the richest people ever to serve in Congress, and her deep pockets have allowed her to dominate the airwaves and social media platforms with ads.
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