In a news briefing on Tuesday, Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams said that the record increase in voter turnout experienced in recent weeks has "nothing to do with suppression."
"The question about voter suppression and voter turnout is… correlation without causation. We know that increased turnout has nothing to do with suppression," said Abrams.
Abrams was responding to a reporter, who questioned whether Democrats had been wrong that the state law passed last year, SB 202, would not in fact lead to suppression.
Abrams continued: "Suppression is about whether or not you make it difficult for voters to access the ballot. And in Georgia, we know difficulty has been put in place for too many Georgians who want to vote by mail, who had to figure out a calendar of applying just early enough but not too late, who had to have wet signatures so they could print things out, take a picture, upload it."
"We know that across the state, counties have taken advantage of county election boards that have shifted their dynamic. In Spaulding County, they eliminated Sunday voting to target a black community that was showing up," she said.
"We know that across the state voters are still facing difficulties. And this is just the primary. Primary voters tend to be more active and engaged voters. But despite the difficulty, despite the outrage that is legitimate and real, we know voters want their right to vote to be made real and be held sacrosanct and so they are showing up."
"We know that voter turnout is not proof that there isn't suppression. It is the antidote to suppression, and that's why we're going to keep fighting to make certain every Georgian voter who wants to cast a ballot can do so," she concluded.
Despite statements from Abrams and others that the Georgia voting law would lead to suppression, on Tuesday it was reported that early voting turnouts in the state have shattered records.
The office of Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger told Fox News that as of Friday, there have been nearly 800,000 ballots cast in the state. That number is more than three times that of 2018, and also higher than 2020, a presidential election year that usually sees increased voter turnout.
Patsy Reid, a black, retired woman told The Washington Post that when she went to cast her ballot, she was surprised that the whole process went smoothly.
"I had heard that they were going to try to deter us in any way possible because of the fact that we didn’t go Republican on the last election, when Trump didn’t win," Reid said.
"To go in there and vote as easily as I did and to be treated with the respect that I knew I deserved as an American citizen — I was really thrown back," she said.
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