UPDATED 7:55 AM PT — Monday, February 4, 2019
Last week, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer announced Stacey Abrams will deliver the Democrats’ rebuttal to the State of the Union.
“She is just a great spokesperson, she’s an incredible leader, she has led the charge for voting rights, which is at the root of everything else and she really has — if you look at her background — she knows what working people, middle class people go through,” said Schumer.
According to Democratic Party officials, Abrams will issue the response from her hometown of Atlanta. She served as the Democrat leader of the Georgia House of Representatives for more than six-years prior to her gubernatorial bid.
The race between her and Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp caught national attention. High profile celebrities, including Oprah Winfrey, came to campaign for Abrams. Despite the outside Hollywood influence, Abrams lost to Kemp by roughly 50,000 votes.
Since her defeat, Abrams launched a legal organization called ‘Fight Fair Georgia,’ which accuses the 2018 Georgia elections of being “rife with mismanagement and irregularities.” In a statement the group said it plans to “pursue accountability in Georgia’s elections and integrity in the process of maintaining our voting polls.”
For someone so concerned about fair elections and voting rights, however, Abrams has some surprising views. She said she would be in favor of non-citizens voting in local elections, and believes there’s a difference when voting in municipal, state and federal elections. She also argued that, in some cases, 16-year-old’s should be allowed to vote.
According to White House officials, the theme of this year’s State of the Union is “choosing greatness” and will focus on issues which can build a bipartisan consensus.
By choosing Stacey Abrams to give the State of the Union response, Democrats may be preparing for more partisanship as she’s expressed ambitions for running against Georgia’s Republican Senator David Perdue in 2020.