Liberty Expose: Stacy Abrams And The Democratic Battle For Georgia

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Stacey Abrams has a strong resume; growing up in a large family in Gulfport, Mississippi, she managed to become valedictorian of her high school, earned a law degree from Yale, and rose in Georgia’s House of Representatives to become minority leader -  all while writing romance novels under the pen name Selena Montgomery. And now, she wants to add another title to the list: Governor of Georgia.

She is off to a good start: Abrams won a strong victory over her opponent, Stacey Evans. While both aligned on policy issues, the two candidates attacked each over legal and legislative issues. Abrams won the Democrat nomination with 74 percent of the Democratic vote. Notable politicians such as Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, and Corey Booker have all endorsed Abrams and campaigned on her behalf. Despite her endorsements and background, Abrams is handicapped by the “D” next to her name. Despite Georgia being a blue state from reconstruction up until 2003 – well over a hundred years of Democrat control – the Peach State has been a constant Republican stronghold for the last 15 years, and is likely to go red again – should the GOP manage to find a nominee.

Like the presidential Republican race in 2016, Georgia’s GOP primary was cluttered with candidates. Because of the numbers, no Republican won the more than 50 percent majority – and now the GOP must participate in the brutal infighting associated with runoffs.

The GOP candidates are in a scramble to achieve the party nomination. After no clear majority was won in the initial Georgia Republican primary, GOP candidates Casey Cagle and Brian Kemp will compete in a runoff election on July 24. Cagle, the frontrunner who received 38 percent of the GOP vote, is the current Lieutenant Governor of Georgia. Kemp is serving as Georgia’s Secretary of State and won 26 percent of the Republican vote. Like in the Democratic primary, both GOP candidates mostly align on policy issues but are attacking their former party-allies over smaller legislative concerns.

The most recent poll of President Trump’s approval rating showed a sharp decline in pro-Trump sentiment. The January poll found that only 36.7 percent of Georgia residents approved of the president’s job performance, and 58.7 did not. The last poll taken in that state found a split amongst voters in presidential approval. Though President Trump’s national approval rating has increased since the Georgia poll was taken months ago (one recent poll that the Democrats are losing favor with Millennials), a poor Trump approval rating will not bode well for the GOP. As past officer-seekers have found, elections, especially midterms, are more about the president than the actual candidates.

However, the GOP does have reason for optimism. The last Georgia election to gain national attention, the race for its 6th congressional district, went to the Republicans. In a district that only reluctantly showed in favor of Trump in the last presidential cycle (as opposed to the 6th district’s history of confirmed GOP support), many predicted that the 6th district would be won by Democrat Jon Ossof. But despite the skepticism, the GOP still managed a victory – though only a slight one.  

Though a strong choice for the Democratic nomination, Rep. Abrams and her party have a steep uphill climb. The election is still months away and anything can happen. Lest we forget, a Democrat now occupies a Senate seat for Alabama because, as it turns out, Roy Moore the Republican candidate for Alabama’s senate seat had an affinity for underage women (or more accurately, girls.)

But the Democrats shouldn’t hold their breath – most candidates don’t have a history of flirting with middle-schoolers at malls. The latest poll published by RealClearPolitics gave GOP candidate Casey Cagle a five point lead over Abrams. If Cagle defeats his opponent in the runoff, that lead is likely to increase. The forecast does not look well for Abrams and the Democrats in Georgia, but there is still months to go before the election.