Georgia Democrat Stacey Abrams's advocacy group has funneled $9.4 million in legal fees to a law firm owned by the gubernatorial candidate's campaign chairwoman.
The group, Fair Fight Action, paid the seven-figure sum between 2019 and 2020 to a firm where Allegra Lawrence-Hardy, Abrams's campaign's chairwoman and close friend, is one of two partners. The payments were part of Abrams's $25 million legal campaign to challenge Georgia's voting laws—an effort largely struck down by a federal judge last month.
Additional payments made in the last two years are not yet publicly available, Politico reported:
The firm received $9.4 million from Abrams’ group, Fair Fight Action, in 2019 and 2020, the last years for which federal tax filings are available. Lawrence-Hardy declined to comment on how much her firm has collected from Fair Fight Action in 2021 and 2022 — years in which Fair Fight Action v. Raffensperger, for which Lawrence-Hardy was lead counsel, had most of its courtroom activity.
Fair Fight Action has maintained that the suit — which ended last month when a federal judge ruled against the group on all three remaining claims — served an important role in drawing attention to voting inequities.
But some outside the group questioned both the level of expenditures devoted to a single, largely unsuccessful legal action and the fact that such a large payout went to the firm of Abrams’ close friend and campaign chair. Those concerns were heightened by the fact that Abrams’ national campaign against voter suppression galvanized the Democratic Party, many of whose top donors helped fill its coffers.
This isn't the first time Abrams has been caught in suspicious money dealings. Abrams received $150,000 from a shadowy company with no online presence and sits on the board of a foundation that gifted thousands of dollars to an anti-Israel activist who supports terrorists.
Abrams filed the legal challenge against Georgia's voting laws after losing the 2018 gubernatorial race by more than 50,000 votes to now-governor Brian Kemp (R.). With nearly two weeks until the election, Abrams trails Kemp by 6.3 points, according to FiveThirtyEight.