Georgia Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams admitted that she will lose the race to Republican Brian Kemp — but still refused to concede — during a press conference Friday afternoon.
“I acknowledge that former secretary of state Brian Kemp will be certified as the victor in the 2018 gubernatorial election, but to watch an elected official who claims to represent the people in this state baldly pin his hopes for election on the suppression of the people’s democratic right to vote has been truly appalling, so let’s be clear. This is not a speech of concession, because concession means to acknowledge an action is right, true, or proper,” Abrams stated.
“As a woman of conscience and faith, I can not concede that, but my assessment is the law currently allows no further viable remedy,” she continued. “Now, I could certainly bring a new case to keep this one contest alive, but I don’t want to hold public office if I need to scheme my way into the post, because the title of governor isn’t nearly as important as our shared title, voters, and that is why we fight on and why I want to say thank you.”
Abrams has repeatedly accused Kemp and his office of suppressing minority voters because of the “exact match” voter ID law that flags voter registrations with any discrepancies from other official identification documents, which she reiterated during her non-concession concession speech. (RELATED: Here’s Exactly How Many Votes Andrew Gillum Gained After Dust Settled In Florida Recount)
Her admission comes after her campaign was reportedly considering filing a lawsuit that could have resulted in Georgia holding an entirely new gubernatorial election. Based on a provision of Georgia election law, Abrams would have been arguing that she lost based on “misconduct, fraud or irregularities … sufficient to change or place in doubt the results.”
Earlier on Friday, Kemp had 50.2 percent of the vote, which would be approximately 18,000 votes above the 50 percent threshold to avoid a runoff that’s already pre-scheduled for Dec. 4.
Had she filed this lawsuit she would have argued that had “misconduct, fraud, or irregularities” not occurred, Kemp would not have been able to reach the 50 percent mark to prevent the addition vote.
If Abrams had won, she would have been the first black female governor in the United States.