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Buttigieg, O'Rourke to meet with Stacey Abrams in Atlanta

Buttigieg, O'Rourke to meet with Stacey Abrams in Atlanta
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Democratic presidential hopefuls former Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-Texas) and South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete ButtigiegPete ButtigiegThe Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by ExxonMobil - Senate begins marathon vote-a-rama before .9T COVID-19 relief passage The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Virus relief bill headed for weekend vote Biden turns focus to next priority with infrastructure talks MORE are set to meet with former Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams in Atlanta on Thursday, according to three people familiar with the plans.

The candidates are slated to hold separate in-person meetings with Abrams on the sidelines of the African American Leadership Summit and IWillVote Gala.

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Abrams has said she is willing to meet with any candidate seeking the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination to discuss voting rights issues. She met earlier this year with former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenSenate holds longest vote in history as Democrats scramble to save relief bill Ex-Trump appointee arrested in Capitol riot complains he won't be able to sleep in jail Biden helps broker Senate deal on unemployment benefits MORE ahead of his presidential campaign announcement.

Her meeting with O’Rourke comes a day after the former Texas congressman rolled out a sweeping elections and government reform proposal that would take steps to ease access to the polls. That plan would mandate automatic voter registration nationwide and make Election Day a national holiday.

A spokesperson for O’Rourke did not respond immediately to The Hill’s request for comment, and a spokesperson for Buttigieg declined to comment on the meeting but confirmed that the mayor is scheduled to meet with Abrams on Thursday.

Abrams, who’s near miss in her bid for Georgia governor last year propelled her to Democratic stardom, has left the door open to a possible presidential run of her own. She was previously reported to be weighing a challenge to Sen. David Perdue (R-Ga.) in 2020 but announced in April that she would not run for Senate.

In an interview on MSNBC last month, Abrams said she had not yet made a decision on whether to mount a presidential campaign, adding that she could jump into the contest “as late as the fall and still have a real chance to win.”

Abrams’s close but ultimately unsuccessful bid for governor last year has fueled Democratic hopes of making electoral gains in the state in 2020. A number of the party’s presidential contenders have already made stops in the state this year.

Updated 5:21 p.m.