A movement to counter a potential 2022 gubernatorial campaign by voting rights advocate Stacey Abrams was launched by Georgia Republicans on Monday (Feb. 1). Allies of Gov. Brian Kemp and former senator Kelly Loeffler are reportedly behind the effort.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that the “Stop Stacey” independent committee is hard at work despite the fact that Abrams has not publicly announced whether she would run again. But the Georgia GOP, which was roundly defeated in the U.S. Senate race by Democrats Rev. Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff, view the prospect of Abrams running again as a threat.
“We will do whatever it takes to expose Stacey Abrams’ radical network, highlight her dangerous agenda and ultimately defeat her – and her left-wing candidates – at the ballot box,” Jeremy Brand, a senior strategist with the committee, told the AJC. “There is no time to waste: We must stand up, fight back and stop Stacey.”
The committee is reportedly trying to create nationwide fundraising, bring in the support of conservatives, broadcast ads that criticize Abrams, and push forward narratives in the media that take aim at Abrams to pre-empt any possible run in next year’s race.
Abrams narrowly lost to Kemp in the 2018 Georgia gubernatorial race in a bitterly fought contest. She contended that he used his power as then-Secretary of State to manipulate the voting system to suppress the votes of Georgians, many of whom were Black, at the polls.
Since then, Abrams has continued to champion voting in the state and inspired momentum around the country. Her activism is largely credited with delivering Georgia for President Biden and turning out Georgians to vote for Warnock and Ossoff in the senate runoff in January in record numbers.
The organization she started, Fair Fight , which advocates for voting rights has become a powerful fundraising entity, bringing in $100 million in the past two years, the AJC reports. Warnock, who is pastor of Atlanta’s Ebenezer Baptist Church was picked by Abrams to take Loeffler on in the senate race.
The Stop Stacey website has already started billing Abrams as a “radical leftist,” some of the same rhetoric Loeffler used in her losing campaign against Warnock.
Stacey Abrams’ tireless work to save America’s democracy may also result in a Nobel Peace Prize. According to Reuters, Lars Haltbrekken, a Socialist Party member of Norway’s parliament, said while announcing her nomination, “Abrams’ work follows in Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s footsteps in the fight for equality before the law and for civil rights.”
Haltbrekken continued, “Abrams’ efforts to complete King’s work are crucial if the United States of America shall succeed in its effort to create fraternity between all its peoples and a peaceful and just society.”