With votes still being counted, Democrat Stacey Abrams has refused to concede the Georgia governor's race to Republican Secretary of State Brian Kemp, who also oversees the election.
With 99% of precincts reporting, Abrams lags behind Kemp by about 75,000 votes, but Abrams believes the race is still too close to call. "I'm here tonight to tell you votes remain to be counted. There's voices that are waiting to be heard," Abrams said to her supporters in Atlanta Wednesday morning.
In a statement to Refinery29, the Abrams campaign said they are still expecting votes from three of Georgia's largest counties, ones which lean in favor of the Democratic candidate. "Across our state, folks are opening up the dreams of voters in absentee ballots, and we believe our chance for a stronger Georgia is just within reach. But we cannot seize it until all voices are heard," Abrams said.
Georgia has been ground zero for voting rights this election cycle, as Refinery29 has previously reported. In the run up to the election, Kemp deployed brazen tactics of voter suppression, purging hundreds of thousands of voters from the rolls and putting the registration of thousands of mostly Black voters on hold using a confusing "exact match" policy, which was eventually struck down in court. Also, just days before the election, Kemp opened an investigation into the state’s Democratic party for “possible cyber crimes” for a failed hacking attempt of the voter registration system. Kemp cited no evidence for the claim.
On Election Day, some voters in Georgia waited hours in line to vote, some polling stations suspiciously lacking power cords for voting machines. Some majority Black counties had only three voting machines, causing lines to snake.
On Tuesday, voters and activists including LaTosha Brown, co-founder of Black Voters Matter Fund, filed an emergency lawsuit against Kemp, seeking to bar him from overseeing the counting of votes, the certification of results, or any runoff or recount procedures.
In Georgia, if neither candidate receives 50%+1 or a majority of the vote, a runoff is triggered and Abrams and Kemp will face off again on December 4.
This is a developing story and will be updated.