Republicans in Georgia, led by the secretary of state and GOP gubernatorial nominee Brian Kemp, are hoping that voter suppression tactics will help them carry a close governor’s race in the state, but their strategy could be backfiring.
According to exit polling from NBC News, a majority of voters in the state are concerned that eligible voters won’t be able to cast their ballot in the state.
— PoliticusUSA (@politicususa) November 7, 2018
Maddow explained the data:
We do actually have some new exit poll data. NBC News was able to do exit poll data of Georgia voters in terms of their concerns about voter suppression. Look at this. The concern that people who aren’t eligible to vote will nevertheless be able to vote, that’s 41%. But the concern that eligible voters will be prevented from voting, that beats it by double digits, that is at 51%. If you break it down by race among Georgia voters, you’re gonna see why the numbers shake out that way. The concern that people not eligible will vote is a concern of a majority of white voters, 54%. But among African-American voters, look at the concern that eligible voters will be prevented from voting. 73% of black voters in Georgia are saying they have concerns that eligible voters will be blocked.
Voter suppression tactics could be backfiring in Georgia
While Republicans are hoping that their suppression efforts in Georgia could peel off enough voters to swing a close context in their favor, it could be having the reverse effect.
When people are discouraged from voting, particularly the African American community, they only become more energized to get out and reach for the ballot.
On a night when Stacey Abrams stands to become the first female black governor in the country, Republicans may have given voters in Georgia even more motivation to turn out to vote.
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.