Politics

Ferguson’s Primary Challenger Once Tried to Work for Him

Republican Philip Singleton sought job in Ferguson’s office before deciding to run against him

A primary challenger Rep. Drew Ferguson, R-Ga., previously sought a job with him. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Georgia Rep. Drew Ferguson’s Republican primary challenger is trying to take his job, but at one point he sought one in his office.

Philip Singleton met with Ferguson in July 2017 to discuss employment opportunities, a month after Singleton filed as a candidate, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.

But text messages obtained by the AJC showed when Ferguson told Singleton there were no positions, Ferguson said he would move forward with his challenge.

“I was hoping to be able to affect change from within the system, but understand your position,” Singleton texted Ferguson. “We will move forward with our campaign and look forward to lively and honest debate about the way forward for our Nation as we strive to serve the great American’s [sic] of the 3rd district.”

Singleton said he expected Ferguson to convince him to run in the neighboring 2nd District.

“I left that meeting open to the idea of working with the congressman instead of running against him to fill the major gaps, with the impression that he was open to addressing the issues I had pointed out (in his platform, including health care and the Syrian civil war), and that he wanted to bring me on to strengthen his team,” Singleton said in a statement.

Singleton said he felt duped when Ferguson texted he didn’t have the money to hire him.

But Ferguson’s campaign spokesman Dan McLagan said Singleton was the one who requested the meeting.

“He thought Drew was a hell of a Congressman when he was asking for a job but I guess he changed his mind,” McLagan said.

Ferguson is serving his first term. Georgia’s primary is on May 22.

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