The 2002 Georgia Gubernatorial Election was held on November 5, 2002. Incumbent DemocraticGovernor of GeorgiaRoy Barnes sought a second term as governor. State SenatorSonny Perdue emerged as the Republican nominee from a crowded and hotly contested primary, and he faced off against Barnes, who had faced no opponents in his primary election, in the general election. Though Barnes had been nicknamed "King Roy" due to his unique ability to get his legislative priorities passed, he faced a backlash among Georgia voters due to his proposal to change the state flag. Ultimately, Perdue was able to oust Barnes as governor and became the first Republican to serve as governor of the state since Reconstruction.