‘I was the first person who ran for president without the protection of the Voting Rights Act…’
(Kaylee McGhee, Liberty Headlines) At a speech commemorating a pivotal moment in the civil rights movement, Hillary Clinton blamed the disfranchisement of black voters for her own 2016 loss and that of Stacey Abrams, Georgia’s failed 2018 gubernatorial candidate.
“We know, don’t we, that candidates both black and white have lost their races because they have been deprived of the votes they otherwise would have gotten,” Clinton said during an address at the 54th annual “Bloody Sunday” service in Selma, Ala. “And the clearest example is from next door in Georgia. Stacey Abrams should be governor, leading that state right now.”
Abrams lost the race to Georgia’s then-Secretary of State Brian Kemp, who received 50.2 percent of the vote, compared to Abrams’s 48.8 percent.
Had neither received 50 percent (a Libertarian candidate drew roughly 1 percent) it would have triggered an automatic runoff between the two leading candidates by state law.
Abrams refused to submit the race, claiming the election was rigged against her and that Kemp had used his position to block minorities from being able to vote by purging the rolls of inactive voters and closing down polling places in minority precincts.
“It began eight years ago with the systematic disenfranchisement of more than a million voters,” Abrams said.
“It continued with the underfunding and disinvestment in polling places, in training and in the management of the county delivery of services. And I think it had its pinnacle in this race,” she said. “So yes, there was a deliberate and intentional disinvestment and, I think, destruction of the administration of elections in the state of Georgia.”
Clinton’s comments about Abrams echoed those she made in the week immediately following the Nov. 6 election. “If she had a fair election, [Abrams] already would have won,” Clinton said at the time.
On Sunday, Clinton, who previously has offered a multitude of excuses for her 2016 loss to President Donald Trump, went on to compare Abrams’s failed campaign to her own 2016 presidential campaign.
“I was the first person who ran for president without the protection of the Voting Rights Act, and I will tell you, it makes a really big difference,” Clinton said.
“It doesn’t just make a difference in Alabama and Georgia,” she added. “It made a difference in Wisconsin, where the best studies that have been done said somewhere between 40,000 and 80,000 people were turned away from the polls because of the color of their skin, because of their age, because of whatever excuse could be made up to stop a fellow American citizen from voting.”