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Abrams embraces ‘public education’ mantra as Cagle deals with fallout

Former House Minority Leader Stacy Abrams, now a Democratic candidate for governor, is embroiled in a dispute over what role she played in a 2015 redistricting bill that moved black voters out of legislative districts that were held by Republicans and based in McDonough and Stockbridge. BOB ANDRES /BANDRES@AJC.COM
Former House Minority Leader Stacy Abrams, now a Democratic candidate for governor, is embroiled in a dispute over what role she played in a 2015 redistricting bill that moved black voters out of legislative districts that were held by Republicans and based in McDonough and Stockbridge. BOB ANDRES /BANDRES@AJC.COM

Talk about counter-programming.

As Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle grapples with fallout over his role in education debates, Democrat Stacey Abrams is charting a different course.

The party’s nominee for governor announced a 7 p.m. town hall Wednesday at her campaign’s headquarters to focus on her fight against “public school privatization.” Her tag-line of choice: “Georgia’s Public Education Governor.”

She seems likely to seize on two events over the last week that have jolted the GOP race for governor, a July 24 runoff that pits Cagle against Secretary of State Brian Kemp.

The first is a secret recording of Cagle admitting he supported "bad public policy" in the form of private school tax credits to thwart a rival.

The second is a GOP state senator's comments that Cagle insisted on boosting funding for charter schools to get support from an outside group.

Abrams, in a statement Wednesday, said she emphasizes the same point in meetings across Georgia: “I will not hand our public schools to private interests.”

“We must ensure that no matter what zip code a child lives in or how much their family makes, every child can access an education so they have the freedom and opportunity to thrive.”

More recent stories on the Georgia governor’s race:

ExploreEXCLUSIVE: Cagle backed charter bill to nab support from outside group 
Explore
ExploreSecret recording shows Cagle backed ‘bad’ bill to hurt gov race rival 
ExploreThe Jolt: ‘We deserved better,’ hometown paper says of Casey Cagle recording 
ExploreAs Abrams focuses on Georgia economy, her allies level attacks at GOP 
ExploreNew Cagle ad snipes at Kemp: ‘Get that big truck outta here.’ 
ExploreRead the highlights of Cagle’s response to secret recording 
ExploreCagle tries to limit damage after secret audio recording 
ExploreRead transcript of secret recording of Cagle backing ‘bad public policy’ 
ExploreA battle between Cagle, Kemp allies leads to ‘sexual predators’ claim 

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