Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams speaks to her supporters during her election night watch party at the Hyatt Regency in Atlanta, Tuesday, November 6, 2018. Georgia's gubernatorial race was too close to call, possibly signaling a run-off election. (ALYSSA POINTER/ALYSSA.POINTER@AJC.COM)
Photo: Alyssa Pointer
Photo: Alyssa Pointer

Stacey Abrams: ‘Votes remain to be counted,’ expects runoff

Democrat Stacey Abrams told hundreds of supporters who waited to hear from her on election night that the race is not over.

“I’m here tonight to tell you votes remain to be counted,” she said around 1:45 a.m. “There are voices waiting to be heard. 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.” 

Abrams said will remain vigilant to make sure all votes are counted and that she expected a runoff against Republican Brian Kemp.

She spoke about the campaign testing her faith, and without naming Kemp criticized him for what she described as attempts to suppress the vote. But she said the faith people put in her kept her motivated to continue fighting for a win.

“You have inspired me every single day of this campaign,” Abrams told supporters. “I know what you sacrificed to make your way to the polls, to volunteer after work or on lunch breaks. And I know that you put your faith in me.”

Oprah Winfrey campaigned with Abrams last week, and now Abrams is using one of Oprah’s famous catch phrases.

“Our best lives are within reach,” she told the crowd. “Fully funded public education in the state of Georgia. Medicaid expansion. And raising family incomes without raising taxes.”

She ended by making a pitch to those who may not have supported her during the general election, either because they didn’t vote at all or cast ballots for Kemp or Libertarian Ted Metz.

“You’re going to have a chance to do a do-over, and I need you to know that it is my mission to serve you, to serve Georgia, to make you proud,” Abrams said. “And for those who didn’t pick me the first time, to change your mind about me and what we can accomplish together.”

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