Right-wing media attack Stacey Abrams after she delivers the Democratic response to the SOTU

Right-wing media attack Stacey Abrams after she delivers the Democratic response to the SOTU

Blog ››› ››› GRACE BENNETT

After Stacey Abrams, the 2018 Democratic Georgia gubernatorial candidate, delivered the Democratic response to President Donald Trump’s State of the Union address, conservative media figures reacted by downplaying voter suppression.

On January 29, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) announced that Abrams would deliver the Democratic response:

In addition to giving a platform to a prominent figure in the party, Abrams' selection sent a message after House Democrats proposed their first bill of the 2019 session, which included provisions to expand and protect voting rights. Abrams’ narrow loss in the governor’s race was tainted by widespread voter suppression in Georgia in the two years before the 2018 election -- much of it spearheaded by Abrams’ opponent, now-Gov. Brian Kemp. Kemp, who was Georgia’s secretary of state and oversaw his own election despite calls for him to resign, was responsible for purging more than 1.4 million voter registrations since 2012. He also placed more than 53,000 registration applications on hold, nearly 70 percent of which came from Black people. Many of the applications were held up because of small errors such as “a dropped hyphen in a last name.”    

In stark contrast to Kemp, Abrams is a strong advocate for voting rights, as Schumer also noted during his announcement. Abrams also aggressively condemned Kemp’s undemocratic and racist tactics both before and after the election.

Despite Abrams’ record of backing voting rights and Kemp’s attempts at voter suppression, some right-wing media figures argued after the selection was announced that Abrams had attempted to undermine the results of the gubernatorial election. Sinclair’s Boris Epshteyn wrote that Abrams was “unable to accept her loss in the race for governor.” Others mocked Democrats for picking a “failed” candidate to deliver their response.

Predictably, right-wing media reacted to her February 5 response to the State of the Union with a denial of the impact of voter suppression:

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The Presidency & White House
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