Abrams hints at possible recount in Georgia governor’s race

Democratic candidate Stacey Abrams offered no signs she plans to concede in the Georgia gubernatorial race during a speech in the early morning hours of Wednesday.

“I want to say this: if I wasn’t your first choice or if you made no choice at all, you’re gonna have a chance to do a do-over,” Abrams said during the speech to supporters, alluding to a potential recount.

“Votes remain to be counted, there are voices that remain to be heard,” she said. “We believe our chance for a stronger Georgia is within reach.”

{mosads}Abrams’s remarks came shortly after her campaign manager Lauren Groh-Wargo said her campaign believes there are outstanding votes in Democratic areas as well as provisional and absentee ballots that could lead to her victory, Talking Points memo reported.

Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp (R) led Abrams 51 to 48 percent with 97 percent of precincts reporting when Abrams made her speech.

Abrams emerged on stage to deliver her address amid cheers of “Stacey!” 

“When you chose me as your Democratic nominee, I made you a vow,” she began to cheers from the crowd. “In our Georgia, no one would be unseen, no one is unheard and no one is uninspired.

“Tonight, we have closed the gap between yesterday and tomorrow,” Abrams continued. “But we still have a few more miles to go.”

Kemp during a speech shortly after Abrams’ said there are still “votes yet to count but we have a very strong lead.”

“And folks, make no mistake, the math is on our side to win this election,” Kemp said during an address from his campaign headquarters in the early hours of Wednesday morning. “We are waiting on the final results but I’m confident that victory is near.”

There were roughly 284,000 mail-in ballots cast statewide, and Groh-Wargo said tens of thousands of those came from Abrams’ supporters, local outlet Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.

Groh-Wargo told the election watch party that the campaign believes the race is headed towards a runoff.

Under Georgia law, recounts may be initiated if the margin between candidates is less than one percent or if there appears to be a discrepancy or error in the returns. Election officials, voters or the candidates themselves may initiate recounts.

“Every vote’s getting counted,” Abrams said repeatedly. “Because I’ll tell you this in a civilized nation, the machinery of democracy should work for everyone, everywhere not just in certain places and not just on a certain day.” 

During the campaign, Abrams has repeatedly accused Kemp of suppressing minority votes in his position overseeing Georgia’s elections. 

Kemp has denied the allegations and declined to step down from his post.

Abrams’ speech on Wednesday morning was largely a rousing vow to her supporters that she does not intend to concede. 

“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.

“You see I learned a long time, we don’t need to agree on everything but I will always respect you,” she continued. “Because that’s what leadership requires at this moment and it is how we breathe life back into our republic when it seems to be shallow of breath.”

Updated at 2:17 a.m.


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