Former Columbus mayor Teresa Tomlinson announces U.S. Senate bid

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Former Columbus Mayor Teresa Tomlinson is officially running for U.S. Senate. 

Wednesday morning, the Georgia Democrat has launched a website for her 2020 campaign for the seat now held by incumbent Georgia Republican Sen. David Perdue, who in his first term has emerged as a close ally of President Donald Trump.

"I'm running for U.S. Senate in 2020 because the Washington power structure isn't working for us," Tomlinson says in a statement on her campaign website. "If we keep sending the wrong people to Washington, it never will."


Tomlinson said she would run in the Democratic primary if Stacey Abrams decided not to run, which happened Tuesday.

MORE: Stacey Abrams not running for U.S. Senate seat in 2020

Republicans hold a 53-47 Senate majority and Abrams had been heavily recruited by Democratic party leaders to run. Abrams' decision not to was a high-profile recruiting blow to Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer.

Tomlinson's campaign says she raised $265,000 within hours of Abrams bowing out.

The 54-year-old Tomlinson served two terms as mayor of Columbus, Georgia's second-largest city. She touts reducing crime, reforming budgeting and connecting neighborhoods with trails for walking and biking as accomplishments of her tenure.

In a statement, the spokesperson for the National Republican National Senate Committee responded to Tomlinson's announcement by saying she "holds the same extreme positions as Stacey Abrams, but lacks her profile and political network."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.