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Abrams stumps in Athens with message for young voters

 Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams and Athens-Clarke County Mayor Kelly Girtz wave to supporters at a rally in Athens on October 19, 2022.
Isabela Weiss / WUGA
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Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams and Athens-Clarke County Mayor Kelly Girtz wave to supporters at a rally in Athens on October 19, 2022.

Supporters of Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams packed College Square Wednesday to hear Abrams call on young voters to push back against voter suppression.

Two days after being questioned in the gubernatorial debate about her claim that voter suppression lost her the 2018 election, Abrams contended that many 2018 voters were prevented from casting their vote.

"We learned that 50,000 people had their right to vote held hostage by the Secretary of State," Abrams said. "We learned that 214 precincts had been shut down and later, an independent analysis would tell us that 85,000 Georgians could not cast a ballot in 2018 because there was nowhere to go."

Abrams called on the crowd to use their vote to fight for more affordable healthcare, laws to address growing cases of gun violence, and reproductive rights.

"What if we didn't have to be worried about gun violence taking our families and ruining our communities?" Abrams asked the crowd. "What if we had the right to control our bodies as women?"

A recent poll of likely voters conducted by the University of Georgia on behalf of the Georgia News Collaborative showed Abrams trailing her opponent, incumbent Republican Brian Kemp.

Martin Matheny is WUGA's Program Director and a host and producer of our local news program 'Athens News Matters.' He started at WUGA in 2012 as a part-time classical music host and still hosts WUGA's longest-running local program 'Night Music' which is heard on WUGA and GPB Classical. He lives in Normaltown with his wife, Shaye and dog, Murphy.