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Stacey Abrams refuses to concede Georgia governor's race

Stacey Abrams refuses to concede Georgia governor's race
Posted at 6:45 AM, Nov 07, 2018

Democratic candidate Stacey Abrams is not conceding the Georgia governor's race to Republican candidate Brian Kemp, arguing that the high stakes contest is too close to call.

CNN has not projected a winner in the Georgia governor's race, but Kemp is ahead in votes with 99% of precincts reporting.

"I'm here tonight to tell you votes remain to be counted. There's voices that are waiting to be heard," Abrams told supporters early Wednesday morning gathered in Atlanta.

In a statement provided to CNN, her campaign cited several specific reasons why she is not conceding, including that three of the state's largest counties "have reported only a portion of the votes that were submitted by early mail" and four other large counties "have reported exactly 0 votes by mail," according to the campaign. Together, it said, the seven counties "are expected to return a minimum of 77,000 ballots."


"These counties also represent heavily-Democratic leaning constituencies, and the majority of those votes are anticipated to be for Stacey Abrams," the statement read.

The campaign also said it was waiting for absentee ballots -- "another major pickup opportunity for Abrams"-- to be counted, something that Abrams told her supporters in Atlanta as well.

"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. But we cannot seize it until all voices are heard," Abrams said at the event early Wednesday morning. "And I promise you tonight, we're going to make sure that every vote is counted."

Voters rights issues have taken front and center in the Georgia high profile gubernatorial race between Kemp, the GOP secretary of state, and Abrams, a Georgia state representative. If elected, Abrams would be the nation's first black female governor.

Democrats have accused Kemp of a conflict of interest as he refused to step away from his post overseeing state elections while he campaigned for governor.

Last month, a federal judge ruled Georgia election officials had to stop rejecting absentee ballots with voters' signatures that didn't appear to match signatures on record.

On Sunday, Kemp's office opened an investigation into the Georgia Democratic Party for what it said was an attempted hack of the state's voter registration system, without providing proof. Georgia Democrats flatly denied the allegation.

He dismissed critics alleging that he weaponized state law to suppress the minority vote as "outside agitators."

A lawsuit filed Tuesday in a Georgia federal court by five state voters asked a judge to strip Kemp of his powers over the midterm election -- including any potential runoffs.

Voters in the Peach State also faced long lines and malfunctioning machines during Tuesday's vote.