Joe Biden and Kamala Harris’ victory last Saturday was unique in history. Not only had they succeeded in defeating the fascism of the dangerous Trump administration, but they also embodied the struggle of the American people to take control of their future.
This is the first time in the country’s history that the victors are not the names on the ballot, but all the activists, organizers, and voters behind the effort.
Among them, Georgia activist Stacey Abrams.
After making a name for herself as the favorite candidate for state governor in the 2018 mid-term elections, her defeat was evidence of the aggressive suppression of votes of people of color in the region, and her resilience demonstrated the determination of the people — especially women of color — to change the rules of the game forever.
Abrams spent the last two years mobilizing the vote, changing the political discourse, and drawing attention to the cracks in the democratic system, both in her party and in the rest of the country.
As Politico explains, her argument for the party was simple: Democrats could win more races by broadening their coalition to include uncommitted voters of color, rather than focusing on persuading undecided, moderate, and often white voters.
Taking her own campaign as an example, where he managed to register 200,000 new voters in one of the country’s most conservative states, Abrams founded the Fair Fight and the New Georgia Project organizations, mobilizing young, first-time voters, with a particular emphasis on communities of color.
His effort finally delivered, putting Joe Biden at the top of the state by more than 10,000 votes, as Sunday’s count marked.
The coveted victory in Georgia brought his Electoral College totaling more than 300 votes.
Now, with Joe Biden about to become the next president of the United States, and with Kamala Harris about to become the first woman and woman of color to hold the position of vice president, honor must be given to those who deserve it.
According to CNN, no Democratic presidential candidate has won in Georgia since Bill Clinton in 1992, although Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton came pretty close.
Biden won more than 2.4 million votes in Georgia, surpassing Clinton’s total by more than half a million.
“Stacey has tirelessly worked to get Joe Biden and the Democratic National Convention to pay attention to Georgia, spending years organizing and strategizing to make sure Georgians have their voices heard at the polls,” said Nsé Ufot, CEO of the New Georgia Project, an effort launched by Abrams in 2013 to grow the electorate. “We wouldn’t be in the position we are in today without her leadership.”
Abrams herself told CNN on the morning of Election Day that “we have seen dramatic turnout among communities that typically are not at the top of mind for candidates. We have seen them be engaged, be encouraged, and we have seen them turn out.
Three days later, she sounded gratified by the returns.
“My heart is full,” Abrams said on Twitter Friday. In another tweet, she said, “We are just getting started.”