In an election where corruption coated democracy, racism threatened freedom, and where Oprah Winfrey felt the need to take her billion-dollar self to the doors of voters, Stacey Abrams, the Georgia Democratic gubernatorial candidate, is making sure that every single voter’s voice is heard.
Brian Kemp, a Trump conservative, is ahead according to polls, but over 70,000 ballots are still in the wings. Abrams, who has been in a civil rights and voter suppression fight, says it’s not over.
“I’m here tonight to tell you votes remain to be counted. There’s voices that are waiting to be heard,” Abrams told supporters early Wednesday morning gathered in Atlanta.
“We are going to make sure that every vote is counted — because, in a civilized nation, the machinery of democracy should work everywhere for everyone. Not just in certain places and not just on a certain day.”
Kemp ran a race while overseeing the elections as secretary of state– the epitome of a fixed fight. And it was permitted.
As of this morning, Kemp led by about 75,000 votes; more than 85,000 registrations were canceled through August 1 of this year alone.
Former President Jimmy Carter, a Georgian, said this conflict of interest ran “counter to the most fundamental principle of democratic elections—that the electoral process be managed by an independent and impartial election authority.”
NAACP president Derrick Johnson, who believes Kemp should’ve stepped down from his secretary of state role, said, “I wish we could bring criminal charges against how he’s treating our democracy during this election cycle.”
But rules and ethics and even the Constitution, in Trump’s America, in racist America, don’t matter.
Abrams campaign said that some of the largest counties have a portion of votes submitted by early mail, and several more that have not reported mail votes yet. The campaign statement said, the seven counties that are heavily Democratic and expected to be pro Abrams “are expected to return a minimum of 77,000 ballots.”
Several locations had to extend voting hours due to technical glitches with machines and some used paper ballots.
Some voters didn’t trust the paper and waited.
Travon Stanton waited for more than an hour at Anderson-Livsey Elementary, in Gwinnett County. “I want to have my voice heard,” Stanton said.
“This election has tested our faith,” Abrams said Wednesday. “I’m not going to name names, but some have worked hard to take our voices away.”
Days before the election, University of Georgia political scientist Charles Bullock said that message is what has brought people out to the polls:
“I think it’s going to have a mobilizing effect,” he said. “It may bring to the polls some individual who otherwise wasn’t that interested in voting, just to demonstrate that they do have this right, and they are going to protect their right.”
Voters filed a lawsuit against Kemp to protect the election process at the close of polls on Tuesday. It claims he cannot be impartial in any vote recount or oversee any remaining part of the election. Both candidates are gearing up for a potential runoff as the votes may not be certified for days to come.