GA Gubernatorial Candidate Stacey Abrams Supports #DefundThePolice
Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams (D) remains involved in a group that supports abolishing police despite previous attempts to distance herself from the #DefundThePolice movement.
Abrams, who served in Georgia’s House of Representatives from 2007 to 2017, is listed as a board member and governing individual with the Marguerite Casey Foundation, a Seattle-based organization that describes itself as a “private, independent grant-making foundation dedicated to helping low-income families strengthen their voice and mobilize their communities.”
Abrams claims her views are not in line with those of the foundation, but her involvement with the group sends a clear message to voters.
Abrams shied away from using the term “defund” during the unrest that followed the death of George Floyd in 2020, but has expressed strong support for a “transformation” in law enforcement procedure.
“We have to have a transformation of how we view the role of law enforcement, how we view the construct of public safety, and how we invest, not only in the work that we need them to do to protect us, but the work that we need to do to protect and build our communities,” said Abrams in 2020. “And that’s the conversation we’re having: We’ll use different language to describe it, but fundamentally we must have reformation and transformation.”
Remaining with the Marguerite Casey Foundation is likely to attract support from young progressive and black voters, but there are plenty of hardworking Georgians who fear that a future without police will endanger themselves and their families.
In March, the foundation shared a Washington Post report titled “The hidden billion-dollar cost of repeated police misconduct” and included the hashtag #DefundThePolice. The report focused on a sum of $3.2 billion spent by law enforcement departments to settle claims, though this figure represents 10 years and 25 of the nation’s largest police departments.
In February, the foundation shared a story about a controversial proposal to replace 85 acres of Atlanta’s South River Forest with a $90 million training facility for police and included the hashtag #AbolishThePolice (the Atlanta City Council voted 10-4 last September to build the facility).
Earlier in February, the group hosted an event called “Becoming Abolitionists – A History of Failed Police Reforms & Vision for True Public Safety.” The event, moderated by foundation president Carmen Rojas, claimed to teach participants “how decolonization movements have informed police abolition movements” and explain “the necessity of an abolitionist future.”
During the event, Rojas slammed “the opposition” (i.e. Republicans) for “fully funding ethno-nationalism, fully funding patriarchy and White supremacy” and claimed her foundation could help create “a more even terrain for that fight.”
Rojas went on to say: “Those of us who believe in dreaming, those of us who believe in justice, those of us who are committed to Black liberation – not as an endeavor to keep in our brain, but something that we want to realize in our lifetime – can use resources to do that.”
The Marguerite Casey Foundation has also expressed support for Colin Kaepernick’s collection of essays titled “Abolition For The People: The Movement For A Future Without Policing & Prisons.”
According to Fox News, Abrams has collected at least $52,500 in income through her involvement with the Marguerite Casey Foundation. As a gubernatorial candidate, her involvement in this extremist group is concerning and many expect her to resign as the election nears. Abrams had no Democratic opponent in the primary and will face off against incumbent Governor Brian Kemp (R) for a second time this November.