Trump says Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams is unqualified. That’s flat wrong.
Georgia’s Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams is “totally unqualified,” President Trump tweeted Saturday morning, saying he endorses her Republican opponent in the closely-watched race.
Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp will be a great governor. He has been successful at whatever he has done, and has prepared for this very difficult and complex job for many years. He has my Strong Endorsement. His opponent is totally unqualified. Would destroy a great state!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 20, 2018
“Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp will be a great governor,” Trump tweeted. “He was been successful at whatever he has done, and has prepared for this very difficult and complex job for many years.”
In reference to Abrams, Trump said, “His opponent is totally unqualified. Would destroy a great state!”
Whatever your politics, it’s flat wrong to call Abrams unqualified.
Abrams has a long career in public service, starting with, at just 29 years old, her appointment as the Deputy City Attorney for Atlanta in 2002. Then in 2007, she was elected to the Georgia State House of Representatives, and in 2011, she was elected as the minority leader of the Georgia House of Representatives, a position she held through July of last year.
That is, as writer Jamil Smith noted on Twitter, more than 17 years of political experience, while Kemp has just about 13.
Additionally, Abrams has a law degree from Yale. Kemp, by contrast, has a bachelor’s degree from the University of Georgia.
FiveThirtyEight rates the Georgia gubernatorial election a toss-up. Recently, the race has been marked by dramatic voter suppression efforts, after a recent investigation by the Palast Investigative Fund found that Kemp improperly purged more than 340,000 voter rolls.
According to the report, Kemp, in his role as secretary of state, cancelled hundreds of thousands of registrations on the grounds the voters had moved, but the investigation found the voters in question still lived at the address where they were registered.
“Their registration is cancelled. Not pending, not inactive – cancelled. If they show up to vote on 6 November, they will not be allowed to vote. That’s wrong,” Palast told reporters on a call earlier this month. “We can prove they’re still there. They should be allowed to vote.”
A recent analysis from The Washington Post found that the state’s “exact match” law, which was passed last year, could disenfranchise nearly 910,000 voters. The law requires that citizens’ names on their government-issued IDs must precisely match their names as listed on the voter rolls, including accents on letters, hyphens in names, and full middle names versus middle initials.
The Georgia NAACP has filed a lawsuit arguing that the exact match law is intended to disenfranchise minority voters.
And as ThinkProgress reported earlier this week, a group of elderly voters were forced off a Black Voters Matter bus taking the seniors to vote. Abrams herself rallied with voters in the town not long after the incident.
“Even if there are obstacles, we have to recognize that those obstacles are only permanent if we don’t fight them,” she told ThinkProgress.
“We want to make certain that the folks of Louisville in Jefferson County understand that we are standing with them as they cast their votes.”