Stacey Abrams’ record

Stacey Abrams, who ran for Georgia governor in 2018 as the Democratic nominee, has stayed in the national spotlight on issues of voting rights. Here is a look at her record and notable coverage of her by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Stacey Abrams, the Democratic nominee for governor. BOB ANDRES /BANDRES@AJC.COM

Credit: Bob Andres

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Stacey Abrams, the Democratic nominee for governor. BOB ANDRES /BANDRES@AJC.COM

Credit: Bob Andres

Credit: Bob Andres

Stacey Abrams began serving the State House in 2007.

Three years later, Yale Law School graduate was chosen as Democratic leader.

She ran for Georgia Governor job with a big national profile and looked to make history as the first black woman elected governor in the country. She fell short with 49 percent of the vote against Republican Brian Kemp. Since her loss, she has stayed in the national spotlight as voting issues and laws have become more contested and Georgia has become a battleground state.

Here is a look at her record and notable coverage of her through the years.

Stacey Abrams’ voting rights non-profit raised $51 million in 2020 - Nov. 17, 2021

The non-profit wing of the voting rights group Stacey Abrams founded after losing the 2018 election to Gov. Brian Kemp reported raising about $51 million in 2020, according to tax records obtained by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Court sides with Abrams campaign, groups in ethics commission’s demand for records - Sept. 17, 2021

A Fulton County judge ruled against the state ethics commission in its bid to get records from Democrat Stacey Abrams’ 2018 gubernatorial campaign and groups it says may have illegally coordinated with the candidate’s bid for office.

Stacey Abrams’ group to pressure Kemp on Medicaid during Georgia-Clemson game - Sept. 4, 2021

When Gov. Brian Kemp watches today’s epic showdown between Georgia and Clemson, he’s liable to see a pointed message from his Democratic archrival.

The Fair Fight Action voting rights group launched by Stacey Abrams will air a 30-second ad Saturday that calls on Kemp to add Medicaid expansion to the agenda of a special legislative agenda he’s calling later this year to help hospitals cope with the worsening pandemic.

Stacey Abrams’ West Virginia wobble on Manchin’s voting rights compromise - June 18, 2021

Stacey Abrams, the former and likely future candidate for governor, initially came out much more forcefully. In a Thursday morning CNN interview and follow-up post on social media, she said she supports Manchin’s proposal “as a vital step.”

Stacey Abrams: Georgia companies shouldn’t face boycott ‘yet’ over election law - April 1, 2021

Stacey Abrams said critics of Georgia’s restrictive new election law shouldn’t rush to boycott the state’s leading firms and biggest events “yet” over their refusal to forcefully oppose the far-reaching overhaul.

Instead, she said the state’s corporate giants should use the chance to publicly condemn the law, invest in voting rights expansion and support wide-ranging federal election legislation before they’re targeted with a boycott movement.

Stacey Abrams: Corporate America cannot be silent on voting restrictions - March 10, 2021

Stacey Abrams said there should be a “hue and cry” from business leaders in opposition to far-reaching proposed voting restrictions in Georgia and other states instead of the more guarded response from corporate titans in the weeks since the measures were first introduced.

Stacey Abrams backs federal protection as Georgia election bills draw more criticism - Feb. 25, 2021

Stacey Abrams says new federal protections for voting rights are needed because too many states, including Georgia, are trying to hinder access.

Stacey Abrams joins push for historic union vote at Amazon’s Alabama facility - Feb. 20, 2021

The Georgia Democrat posted an online video Saturday urging the employees at the online retailing giant’s Bessemer, Ala. facility to form a union to “make your jobs safer, stronger and more secure.”

‘Stacey led the parade’: Many praise Abrams for Dems’ resurgence in Georgia - Nov. 6, 2020

The election results in Georgia are not final, but for the first time in nearly 30 years, a Democratic nominee for president edged ahead in the vote count when former Vice President Joe Biden moved past President Donald Trump in the state early Friday morning.

Broad Georgia ethics probe targets Abrams — and her backers - May 28, 2019

The head of Georgia’s ethics commission has filed a spate of subpoenas targeting groups led by Stacey Abrams and the chairwoman of the state Democratic Party, prompting criticism that he’s trying to exact political revenge against Republican Gov. Brian Kemp’s political opponents.

Abrams to deliver Dems' State of the Union response - Jan. 29, 2019

Stacey Abrams will deliver the response to President Donald Trump’s State of the Union address next week, giving the state’s top Democrat one of the nation’s most prominent pulpits as she considers whether to run for U.S. Senate in 2020.

Georgia’s Stacey Abrams takes aim at possible Senate campaign - Jan. 22, 2019

It’s the question that Stacey Abrams has fielded at every media interview, every speaking appearance, every public event. And here, a few minutes into a statewide “thank-you” tour she launched this week, she was getting it again: What’s next?

Fairness of Georgia elections challenged by far-reaching lawsuit - Nov. 27, 2018

A sweeping lawsuit filed Tuesday in the wake of Georgia’s fierce race for governor calls for a federal judge to overturn state laws that resulted in purged registrations, canceled ballots and many other obstacles to voting.

Backed by former Democratic nominee for governor Stacey Abrams, the lawsuit continues a fight for voting rights that formed the foundation of her campaign.

Stacey Abrams’ defiant speech delights supporters, irks critics - Nov. 16, 2018

The Democrat wished Kemp well and said she will pray for his success as Georgia’s governor. But she also blasted his tenure as secretary of state and promised to remain vocal on the issues of election reform and voter suppression.

Abrams ends run for governor against Kemp - Nov. 16, 2018

Stacey Abrams halted her run for Georgia governor Friday, but the Democrat said she would not concede the contest to Republican Brian Kemp and planned to launch a voting rights group to file “major” litigation challenging election policies.

Kemp declares victory in Georgia governor race - Nov. 7, 2018

Republican Brian Kemp’s campaign declared victory Wednesday after election returns showed he maintained a slim majority over Democrat Stacey Abrams with nearly all precincts reporting.

Abrams, meanwhile, said she wouldn’t concede the race until all ballots are counted, and her campaign started preparing for what could be a lengthy battle in the courtroom and in the media over the outcome of the nationally watched race.

Gun rights vs. gun control a major factor for many Georgia voters - Oct. 22, 2018

But gubernatorial nominee Stacey Abrams and other leading Democrats have broken from decades of conventional party strategy in Georgia in this year’s midterms by calling for new firearms restrictions.

Abrams defends flag-burning protest of Confederate symbol in 1992 - Oct. 23, 2018

Stacey Abrams’ campaign confirmed she participated in the burning of the Georgia state flag bearing the Confederate battle emblem during a protest at the Capitol more than 25 years ago, as images circulated on social media that injected a new debate in the race for governor.

As she runs for governor, Stacey Abrams evokes her life story - Oct. 12, 2018

With a victory on Election Day Abrams would become the nation’s first black female governor, though her sights were not always set on politics. Growing up, she was so captivated by James Bond movies and “General Hospital” that she dreamed of becoming a bestselling spy novelist. She finished her first novel while at Yale Law School.

While in Georgia House leadership, Abrams was also a per diem leader - Sept. 18, 2018

Once Stacey Abrams became the state House minority leader in 2011, she began collecting daily payments from the state at almost twice the rate of her predecessor — and more than twice the rate of other members of the General Assembly — records show.

Voter drive raised millions, but Abrams won’t say from whom - Sept. 14, 2018

Stacey Abrams’ name was nowhere to be found on statewide ballots in the 2014 elections. In Georgia’s House District 89, which she had represented since 2007, she didn’t even have an opponent.

But Abrams was nonetheless directing a sprawling, well-funded campaign, one that established her as a major political figure in Georgia and beyond.

Abrams’ health care plan centers on Medicaid expansion for poor - Sept. 10, 2018

Abrams promised to explore a program to stabilize health insurance premiums, to offset some policyholders’ soaring insurance costs. She also invoked Georgia’s high death rate for pregnant women, new mothers and babies, and said she would look to expand access to doctors for them, especially in rural areas. She vowed to uphold the state’s protections for pre-existing conditions under federal health law. And she affirmed her support for access to abortion.

Stacey Abrams on a needed Stone Mountain conversation - Aug. 30, 2018

Abrams elaborated on the subject in a way that she hadn’t in several months, explaining her position as something other than binary – carving or no carving.

Battle over voter registrations set stage for Georgia governor’s race - Aug 17, 2018

As piles of voter registration forms flooded election offices in 2014, Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp launched a fraud investigation into Stacey Abrams’ ambitious effort to boost minority voter turnout.

Abrams faces criticism in dispute over 2015 Georgia redistricting bill - May 3, 2018

Democrat Stacey Abrams is facing backlash over her role in legislation that helped two vulnerable Republicans by shifting minority voters out of their districts.

The tiff centers on a 2015 redistricting bill passed by the state Legislature, now the topic of a federal lawsuit accusing Republicans of racial gerrymandering in a broader redrawing of 17 Georgia House districts.

National attention helps fuel Democrat Abrams’ bid for governor - May 3, 2018

She’s been featured in national publications and television shows, all touting the history that would be made if she is elected governor — becoming the country’s first black woman to hold the office.

Democratic hopefuls for Georgia governor seek new gun restrictions - Oct. 2, 2017

Stacey Abrams, the former Democratic leader of the Georgia House, slammed the “political cowardice” of lawmakers she said were too timid to challenge the Second Amendment.

State contracts aided candidate’s start-up - March 16, 2018

For six years, Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams held a minority stake in a financial services company that contracted with the state through two related non-profit corporations while she served in the General Assembly.

Abrams owes more than $50K to IRS - March 14, 2018

Democrat Stacey Abrams owes more than $50,000 to the Internal Revenue Service and about $170,000 more in credit card and student loan debt, according to personal financial disclosure documents the candidate for governor released this week.

PolitiFact: Abrams leaves out some details on HOPE deal - Jan. 25, 2018

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams has taken some heat for co-sponsoring a 2011 bill to revamp the HOPE higher education aid program. Her critics say she cut a deal that hurt poor and minority students.

Georgia AG gets 53 forms in probe of voter registration group - Sept. 20, 2017

Fifty-three allegedly forged voter applications are being referred to the state Attorney General’s Office for possible prosecution, a decision by the State Elections Board that effectively closes the Secretary of State Office’s 2014 fraud investigation involving an attention-grabbing registration drive by the New Georgia Project.

The unanimous vote Wednesday came as the case’s lead investigator said he found no wrongdoing by the group, which was founded by then-state House Democratic leader Stacey Abrams to increase the number of minorities on voting rolls.

Stacey Abrams at DNC: Democrats on the cusp of a ‘new American majority’ - July 25, 2016

House Minority Leader Stacey Abrams drew a rousing applause for her forceful defense of Hillary Clinton, declaring her to be a leader for a "new American majority."

Did Democratic leader hide payments paid by Michelle Nunn campaign? - March 3, 2016

You wouldn’t know it because the $30,000 she was paid was concealed behind a company with her sister’s name on it, and Abrams “forgot” to disclose it on legally required paperwork filed with the state.

Democratic leader says Medicaid expansion’s time has come - Jan. 27, 2016

The top Democrat in the state House this week filed legislation to expand Georgia’s Medicaid program, and while Rep. Stacey Abrams knows its a long shot, she said it’s time the discussion advances.

Stacey Abrams still has her eye on ‘16 for Democrats in Georgia - Oct. 11, 2015

Watching Georgia House Minority Leader Stacey Abrams walk into the conference area of a Midtown hotel last week, you’d think she was a rock star.

People stepped in her pathway, made a point to catch her eye, said hello, gave her a hug...

Some of her caucus members privately grouse about poor communication or absentee leadership.

A high-profile Democratic voting group faces new scrutiny - April 11, 2015

The New Georgia Project came under sharp scrutiny not just from Secretary of State Brian Kemp, but from Democrats and donors concerned about the group’s results and transparency.

An analysis by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution revealed discrepancies between the number of voter registration applications the project reported submitting in five key counties and the amount registrars said they actually received.

Abrams looks to push voting rights in Georgia, as Congress quietly works on a bill - Dec. 7, 2013

The topic was voting rights, an issue that seized national attention this year as a result of the U.S. Supreme Court tossing out the formula deciding which states require federal “pre-clearance” for all their voting laws.

Lawmakers collect out-of-session money with little oversight- Dec. 18, 2011

Georgia lawmakers billed the state more than $1.3 million for travel and expenses while the General Assembly was not in session this year, according to data obtained by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution...

The biggest recipients of the payouts in the House were Minority Leader Stacey Abrams, D-Atlanta; Rep. Steven Davis, R-McDonough, who as Information and Audits Committee chairman is supposed to review House members' per diem reports monthly; and House Speaker David Ralston, R-Blue Ridge.

Democrats told to resist map plan - Aug. 12, 2011

The top Democrat in the Georgia House has threatened to field primary challengers against any fellow Democrat who votes for a GOP-drawn redistricting map.

House Minority Leader Stacey Abrams, D-Atlanta, told fellow Democrats in an email obtained by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution that the Republican plans for new district lines are discriminatory and represent a "roll-back of voting rights in Georgia" --- a charge Republicans reject as partisan sour grapes.

Unlikely allies stall tax reform bill vote - March 31, 2011

Problems began Tuesday when House Minority Leader Stacey Abrams, D-Atlanta, pointed out the plan, which would lower the personal income tax rate from 6 percent to 4.5 percent, worked out to be an increase on the average middle-class taxpayer.

Abrams ensures Dems get heard - March 27, 2011

Colleagues and strangers tend to walk away from talks with Stacey Abrams feeling good about the encounter with the Georgia House minority leader.

House approves HOPE bill - March 3, 2011

Meanwhile, Deal began meeting and talking with House Minority Leader Stacey Abrams, D-Atlanta. Eventually, Deal showed Abrams the working draft of the HOPE plan.

Abrams had suggestions. Deal thought they were good ideas and Republican leadership in the House and Senate agreed they made sense.

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