Published: Sat, November 17, 2018

Abrams Ends Fight for Georgia Governor

Abrams Ends Fight for Georgia Governor

Her speech Friday effectively puts a stop to the contest.

Abrams would have been Georgia's and the country's first female African American governor and the first Democrat to win a statewide race there since 2000.

The candidate announced she would file a federal suit against Georgia for "gross mismanagement" of the vote.

The latest tally showed Abrams is roughly 55,000 votes behind Kemp - and in need of more than 17,000 votes to force a December 4 runoff. Abrams is no longer affiliated with the group that she says signed up more than 200,000 potential new voters, but majority never made it onto the rolls.

Lawrence-Hardy told the AP that Abrams will weigh legal considerations alongside her belief that many of her backers - particularly minority and poorer voters who don't regularly go to the polls - heeded her call to participate and ran into barriers.

A spokesman for the Kemp campaign didn't answer his phone and didn't immediately respond to a text message seeking comment after Abrams' speech. But even if she knows can't prove it, she continues to say it's why she lost.

A federal judge in Atlanta late Wednesday handed down an emergency injunction ordering that absentee ballots rejected throughout the state because of an inaccurate or missing birth date be validated and tallied. Judge Jones ruled that counties will not be required to accept absentee ballots with incorrect residence addresses and counties will not be compelled to accept provisional ballots cast by people who voted in a different county than where they are registered to vote.

The secretary of state's office has instructed counties to complete the reviews by 5 p.m. Friday. Throughout this process, we have issued detailed guidance to county officials regarding compliance with these orders and, where necessary, recertification of their results. He also declined to order that provisional ballots cast by voters who went to a precinct in the wrong county be counted. To comply with orders by U.S. District Judges Jones and May, all counties were required to count absentee by mail ballots where those ballots were previously rejected exclusively due to missing or inaccurate dates of birth.

The Abrams for Governor campaign released an ad today on their contention that voters faced lots of problems at the polls and encouraging them to report their stories.

They want people to call their voter protection hotline at 1-888-730-5816. Abrams had been fighting to include additional provisional and absentee ballots into the count, hoping that could help her close the roughly 18,000 vote deficit she needed to force a runoff next month.

Kemp's victory allowed the Republican Party to maintain its grip on power in Georgia, which has not elected a Democrat as governor since 1998.

Top Abrams advisers outlined her prospective case to The Associated Press.

Georgia's election law permits the losing candidate to challenge election results based on "misconduct, fraud or irregularities ... sufficient to change or place in doubt the results".

On Friday evening in Atlanta, Abrams held true to that.

The election took place on November 6th and Kemp has even declared himself the victor, but the Abrams campaign and several other organizations have raised issues (and brought lawsuits) concerning strict policies Kemp enforced that prevented people from casting a traditional ballot if their named differed in any way from the name on the voter roll.

Unofficial returns showed Kemp ahead by roughly 60,000 votes out of almost 4 million cast on November 6.

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