Stacey Abrams Advocates For Voting Rights After Launching Bid For Governor
Stacey Abrams, widely renowned for her work during the 2020 election in drastically expanding voter turnout, had begun a second campaign for Georgia governor.
Abrams ran for governor in 2018 and became the first Black woman ever to be a major party’s nominee for governor. However, she lost narrowly to Brian Kemp (R), which she and political observers believe owes to voter suppression. Abrams and others argue that the voter suppression was largely racially motivated. She also alleges that Kemp manipulated the election illegally through his position as secretary of state in Georgia, where she alleges that he purged voter rolls illegally to benefit himself. Kemp denies any misconduct.
Though Abrams lost the election, her response garnered her national acclaim. She reacted by working to combat voter suppression over the next two years.
She founded the voting rights advocacy group Fair Fight Action in 2018, which promotes free and fair elections and helps people register to vote. Ultimately Abrams helped register over 800,000 voters in Georgia, in time for the 2020 election. Many regard this as the reason that President Joe Biden won Georgia, where the state has not voted for another Democratic president since 1992.
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“We changed the trajectory of the nation,” Abrams said when Biden won the presidency. “Because our combined power shows that progress is not only possible—it is inevitable.”
Now, Abrams has launched another bid at governor of Georgia. This comes at a time when Georgia has continued rolling back on voting rights. This year, Republicans enacted a new law in Georgia that reduces the days available to request an absentee ballot, shortens early voting before runoff elections, restricts ballot drop boxes and imposes other limitations on voting.
“I will do everything in my power to make certain that these new onerous voter suppression laws do not effectively block voters from their right to vote,” Abrams said of the legislation. “And so yes, there’s absolutely a pathway to win.”
Abrams is running on a platform that vows to invest in communities. “This is a state that is on the cusp of greatness,” she said. “But we have high income inequality; we have low graduation rates relative to our capacity; we have a broken public health infrastructure system. But we also have the ability, if we had good leadership, to invest in our communities, in all of our communities across the state.”
Republicans and Democrats alike have expressed doubt that Abrams can win governor in the historically Republican state. However, Abrams assures her supporters to stay patient, and reaffirms the importance of voting despite potential feelings of cynicism or fear.
“Winning an election isn’t about magic,” Abrams said. “Voting isn’t magic. It is medicine. It takes time, it takes effort, it takes continued investment.”
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