Failed Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams warned Friday that if voter suppression wasn't addressed properly in 2020, "we will be having a very different conversation, potentially in Russian, in 2030."
Abrams has repeatedly blamed voter-suppression for her narrow loss to Republican Brian Kemp in last year's Georgia governor's race, although voter registrations and turnout rose during Kemp's tenure and fact-checks undercut her claim that the election was not "fair." Since her defeat, her star has risen in the Democratic Party and she has focused on voting reform efforts in Georgia. She is also mulling a 2020 bid for the presidency or another shot at the Georgia governorship in 2022.
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At a national security forum, Abrams reeled off a list of recent laws she said were being pushed to disenfranchise people, particularly those of color, across the United States, and encouraged the audience to educate itself on the issue.
"There's no more fundamental and national-security crisis than the theft of our elections, not simply through Russian hacking, which is incredibly important and we have to pay attention to it, but by the suppression of the very voters whose voices could change the direction of our country," she said.
Suppression of the vote is "pervasive" and "insidious," she said, because it convinces people it's a "user error."
"If we do not secure our democracy and ensure that every vote counts in 2020, we will be having a very different conversation, possibly in Russian, in 2030," she said, to cheers and applause.
Abrams calls voter suppression a national security threat to the nation. "If we do not secure our democracy in 2020 … we will be having a very different conversation, potentially in Russian, in 2030." #NatSec2020
— Mike Memoli (@mikememoli) May 10, 2019
Abrams spoke alongside former New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu and former Obama White House adviser Ben Rhodes at the event. She has repeatedly claimed she "won" the Georgia race and the election was "stolen" by Kemp, but she lost by nearly 55,000 votes.
She recently ruled out a run for the U.S. Senate in 2020 against Georgia Republican Sen. David Perdue.