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Stacey Abrams is urging voters to be patient as election officials prepare for a possibly extended count after November’s general election.
“We cannot call this election before we have the answer,” Abrams said during PEOPLE magazine’s new BLACKPRINT series.
“The reality is that a delay does not mean the election has been tampered with,” said Abrams. “It means the process is working, because it’s going to take some time to count all of these ballots.”
Delays are expected thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic. This will likely mean that a higher number of Americans will opt to vote by mail this election. Abrams urged viewers to bote, reminding us all that it’s an “election season” rather than an “election day.”
“You want all the time in the world to get there, so the media needs to talk about this election season and election days,” said Abrams. “Don’t make it a single day because then people panic — or worse, they wait and delay.”
She continued, “I would rather have patience and accuracy than speed and autocracy,” Abrams said about the upcoming presidential election. “We don’t want speed. We want accuracy. And that means we need people to be patient.”
In 2018, Abrams set up an election watchdog and voter mobilization group, Fair Fight Action, to combat voter suppression in Black communities across Georgia and encourage potential voters to use their votes.
Abrams addressed people’s hesitation to vote in a June editorial for The New York Times.
“To say that the answer is to go cast a ballot feels not just inadequate, but also disrespectful. “Go vote” sounds like a slogan, not a solution. Because millions of us have voted,” she wrote. “And too many still die. The moment requires many things of each one of us. What I am focused on is the work of showing people, in concrete ways, what voting gets us. And being honest about how much work voting requires.”