Video footage of Abrams telling a campaign audience that she “came up short” was also posted to social media as the Associated Press still had not called the race after midnight.
Before polls even opened in Georgia, a record-breaking more than 2.5 million Georgians had already cast their ballots in the election.
Stacey Abrams and Gov. Brian Kemp have been battling in Georgia’s political space for years. In 2018 the two faced off in a governor’s race that came down to the wire. Although Abrams lost to Kemp in that election, the narrow loss helped propel her in the eyes of many democrats. She also launched her campaign to get more Georgians registered to vote. Since the 2018 election, there have been over 1.6 million new registered voters in the state of Georgia.
Abrams was lavished with praise for the outsized role that she and her Fair Fight organization played in not just registering voters — particularly Black voters — but also spurring them to record turnout in the 2020 presidential election as well as the 2021 Georgia Senate runoff race that helped elect the state’s first Black Senator in Rev. Raphael Warnock.
In the months running up to the 2022 midterm elections, Abrams trailed Kemp in many major polls and pundits questioned whether Abrams had support among black voters.
During an interview on Fox News Abrams called the reports about Black voters a “manufactured crisis” that runs counter to her experience on the campaign trail.
“I think the manufactured crisis [is] designed to suppress turnout … I’ve done more than 50 events in the Black community,” Abrams said on Fox News Sunday.
“I’m excited about the turnout we’re seeing — I’m excited about the engagement that we’re seeing. I know however that every election cycle, there has to be some worry, and in this case, it is a worry that’s being manufactured.”
Abrams added: “I may be African American, but I’m not entitled to a single vote that I don’t earn.”
Reports about Abrams and Black voters harken back to her gubernatorial race in 2018 when she captured up to 94% of the ballots cast by the coveted demographic. According to the Post, that number has dropped to 83% ahead of the election.
Brian Kemp followed his republican strategy to a tee.
After the 2020 election, Kemp fed into Trump’s false claims about the Georgia election, he promoted anti-critical race theory ideals, and refused to expand Medicaid coverage.
He also signed a law to allow permitless concealed carry of a firearm. Kemp was also shaky on COVID response and relief. Hesitant to close and the first to rush to reopen, Kemp’s leadership was lacking throughout the pandemic.