Failed gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams—who, with help from dark money, has reinvented herself as an influential activist in the anti-election-integrity movement—responded to calls for national boycotts of Georgia by saying they were “not necessary” just yet.
In response to the disastrous administration of recent elections, which thrust the state uncomfortably into the national spotlight, Georgia’s GOP-led legislature moved quickly to patch up its flawed policies, drawing outrage from many on the Left.
Several major corporations have denounced the new election integrity law, which Democrats have claimed restricts voting rights.
But many activists argued these companies, such as Delta and Coca-Cola, didn’t condemn the law fast enough. #BoycottDelta was one of the top trending hashtags on Twitter over the weekend, and #BoycottCocaCola had been used in more than 34,000 tweets.
Other activist groups have called for major sporting events to be moved from Georgia, and Hollywood actors and directors have demanded that the entertainment industry leave the state.
President Joe Biden even said this week he would support moving Major League Baseball’s All-Star Game out of Atlanta.
Abrams, however, discouraged leftists from punishing Georgia’s economy.
“As a [b]lack person, a Southerner, an American, I respect and defend the right to boycott—and the advancement of civil rights has relied heavily on economic boycotts,” Abrams wrote in an op-ed for USA Today.
“Until we hear clear, unequivocal statements that show Georgia-based companies get what’s at stake, I can’t argue with an individual’s choice to opt for their competition,” she added.
But “one lesson of boycotts is that the pain of deprivation must be shared to be sustainable,” Abrams continued, arguing that black Americans and other minorities will “bear the brunt of these actions.”
“I have no doubt that voters of color, particularly Black voters, are willing to endure the hardships of boycotts,” she said. “But I don’t think that’s necessary—yet.”
Abrams was credited with pressuring Georgia’s secretary of state, Brad Raffensperger, into settling a lawsuit that considerably loosened the standards for ballot verification during the Nov. 3 and Jan. 5 elections that Democrats allegedly dominated.
The New Georgia Project, which Abrams helped found, has been accused, meanwhile, of an array of ethical and legal violations, including soliciting votes from dead people, nonresidents and others who were ineligible to vote in the state.
Headline USA’s Ben Sellers contributed to this report.