Abrams, Georgia Democrats team up to flip state House


The Democratic Party of Georgia teamed with an arm of the voting rights group founded by Stacey Abrams to launch a high-dollar effort to flip the Republican-controlled state House.

The Legislative Victory Fund, unveiled on Wednesday, is a joint initiative of the Fair Fight  PAC and the state party focused on winning 16 Republican seats in next year’s election. Republicans now hold a 105-75 advantage in the chamber.

The fund also aims to take Republican-held seats in the Georgia Senate, though that chamber is more secure for the GOP. Republicans hold a 35-21 majority and Democrats would have to pull off multiple upsets to flip seven Senate districts.

The organization hired Craig Walters, who was a field organizer for Abrams’ 2018 campaign for governor, to serve as its director.

Abrams said the initiative will work to protect incumbents in swing districts while pushing to elect more Democrats “with an eye on a House majority.”

The task won't be easy. An Atlanta Journal-Constitution analysis showed Democrats would need to erase significant gaps with Republicans in a sweep of conservative-leaning seats to take control of the chamber.

Democrats are targeting the 16 seats where a Republican won with less than 58% of the vote last year. In addition, Democrats couldn't afford to lose many of the 11 House seats they picked up last year, including some in districts long represented by conservatives.

It's the second initiative aiming to give Democrats control of the chamber. The Georgia House Majority Project launched in June with the goal of targeting the most vulnerable Republican incumbents – mostly in the close-in suburbs – with digital ads and direct mail.

The stakes are high. The party that controls the House in 2020 will have great influence in redrawing district lines the following year, and will help set the agenda on Georgia's most divisive and pivotal political issues.