Republican strategists have formed a group called “Stop Stacey” aimed at stopping Georgia Democrat Stacey Abrams from potentially running for governor in 2022. On Monday (Feb. 1), the group aligned itself with Republican Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp, who narrowly won the bid for governor over Abrams in 2018.
Republican strategists aligned with Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp (R) have launched a group geared toward defeating voting rights activist Stacey Abrams in the 2022 gubernatorial election, after she was widely credited for the Democratic Party’s electoral success in the state in the 2020 cycle.
In a sign of how strong a threat she’s perceived to be, the allies of Kemp—and former Sen. Kelly Loeffler (R-Ga.)—announced the launch of the group Monday before Abrams has even announced whether she plans to run, after narrowly losing to Kemp in 2018.
The group, entitled “Stop Stacey,” will help build a national fundraising infrastructure, mobilize Republican supporters, and run advertisements about Abrams, according to a statement from the group’s senior strategist Jeremy Brand.
“We will do whatever it takes to expose Stacey Abrams’ radical network, highlight her dangerous agenda and ultimately defeat her—and her left-wing candidates—at the ballot box,” said Brand.
According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the “Stop Stacey” group will launch with a six-figure sum of seed funding from allies of Kemp, and will then look for more support from state and national Republicans.
The group is led by some of the same operatives who helped run Kemp’s 2018 gubernatorial campaign, during which he defeated Abrams by less than 55,000 votes in a race marred by accusations of voter suppression.
“She ‘flipped’ Georgia for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris. She delivered two Senate seats for Chuck Schumer. Now, she’s aiming for total control,” reads the “Stop Stacey” website. “We have to Stop Stacey and Save America before it’s too late!”
Abrams has worked to mobilize voters in Georgia in the years since her 55,000-vote loss to Kemp, which she—along with other Democrats—maintains was the consequence of GOP efforts to suppress voters of color and young voters. Her voting rights group, the Fair Fight, which she launched in the aftermath, has grown into one of the state’s leading political fundraisers, amassing nearly $100 million in two years. Abrams’ efforts to boost voter turnout, particularly among voters of color, have been widely credited with contributing to President Biden’s victory in the state (2020 was the first time Georgia voted for a Democratic president since 1992) and the victories of the two Democratic Senate challengers which handed the party control of the chamber. On the other hand, Kemp has taken a knock in approval ratings due to former President Trump’s attacks stemming from the Republican governor’s refusal to overturn the results of the 2020 election.
“I plan on running in 2022. I’m not worried about any kind of primary fight. We’ll be victorious. I personally think it’s unnecessary,” Kemp told the AJC in a recent interview. “I hope at the end of the day people come our way, but if they don’t, we’ll get them back after a potential primary.”
Abrams is expected to run a second time for Georgia governor in 2022. Stacey Abrams took on Donald Trump and won by helping turn Georgia blue, so our money is on Abrams.