MSNBC’s Katy Tur dropped a fact check on live television about GOP gubernatorial nominee and secretary of state Brian Kemp’s voter suppression tactics in Georgia – and it left one of his ardent supporters stuttering.
When Tur pointed out that Kemp’s voting restrictions in the state have disproportionally impacted African American voters, the Georgia Republican couldn’t defend it.
Instead, she took a page from Donald Trump’s playbook and simply said the statistic wasn’t true.
“I disagree,” she told the MSNBC reporter. “You can take statistics to do whatever.”
— PoliticusUSA (@politicususa) November 3, 2018
TUR: Does it concern you that it affects more African-American voters than it affects white voters?
KEMP SUPPORTER: I think if it affects anyone, it would affect everyone.
TUR: I think 70% or so, Joy, you might know the stat off the top of your head better than I do, but I think it’s 70% or so African-American voters are affected proportionally by exact match.
KEMP SUPPORTER: I don’t know why you would think that. It seems —
TUR: That’s what the statistics show.
KEMP SUPPORTER: What I think you are suggesting is that African-American voters are unable to follow instructions and to be able to process —
TUR: Oh, no, that’s not what I’m suggesting. It’s what the statistics show. It’s not my conclusion.
KEMP SUPPORTER: I disagree, and I think you can take statistics to do whatever.
Trump era Republicans are completely untethered to reality
Instead of standing up to Donald Trump, a man who lies more than any other leader in the country’s history, Republican candidates and lawmakers have become like him.
In the process, as we saw on Saturday morning, they have convinced their supporters that facts are whatever they want them to be. As the Brian Kemp supporter said, “You can take statistics to do whatever.”
But here’s the thing: statistics are statistics. Voter suppression tactics in Georgia aren’t affecting “everyone.” They are instead targeting voters most likely to vote for Democrats and change the power structure in the state.
Georgia Republicans are trying to restrict the rights of black citizens to cast their votes in a historic election with an African American woman on the ballot.
No matter how favorably Republicans try to frame it, it’s about as indefensible as it gets.
Sean Colarossi currently resides in Cleveland, Ohio. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and was an organizing fellow for both of President Obama’s presidential campaigns. He also worked with Planned Parenthood as an Affordable Care Act Outreach Organizer in 2014, helping northeast Ohio residents obtain health insurance coverage.