Robocall racist targets Oprah, Stacey Abrams in Georgia governor race

A robocall apparently from a white defense team is introducing racism directly into the highly controversial race.

Last-minute legal decisions, a racist robot, and a protester wearing a giant chicken costume that holds a mark that reads "a lot of chicken for discussion."

These are the scenes that play out of the last days of the highly controversial and historic race for the governor of Georgia between Democratic Stacey Abrams and Democrat Brian Kemp.

A robocall obviously from a white group of protagonists racism directly into the fight, which has already been filled with an occasional debate on access to ballots and the repression of voters. Abrams will be the first black female governor in the US history. Kemp, who oversees the elections as secretary of the state of Georgia, firmly denies having used his office to make it difficult for minorities to vote.

Abrams and Kemp both condemn an ​​automated phone call full of racist and anti-Semitic statements. The call, sent to an unknown Georgian number, suggests Oprah Winfrey, the billion-dollar titan who came to Georgia on Thursday to support Abrams.

Robocall says he was paid by The Road to Power, a team that was organized by Scott Rhodes of Idaho. He has been linked to several other robot robbers, including a recent effort in Florida, where Democratic candidate Andrew Gillum will become the first black ruler in his state's history.
Kemp has issued a statement naming the tactics "ugly" and "contrary to the highest ideals of our state and country" and condemning "every person or organization that hinders this kind of hateful hate and craving fanaticism."

The Abrams camp also triggered the move, but shot a shot at Kemp and supporter of the top profile, President Donald Trump, who is coming to Georgia to advance on Sunday. A leading assistant to Abrams said both Kemp and Trump contributed to a poisonous atmosphere and that Kemp was silent about previous tribal attacks against Abrams.

"These automated calls are sent to homes just a few days before President Trumpa arrives, reminding voters exactly who promotes a political climate that celebrates this kind of crazy, poisonous thinking," said Abrams spokesman Abigail Collazo.

Abrams slammed the subject on Saturday in short public comments as he greeted the voters in an Atlanta shopping complex along with local lawyer John Lewis.

"Georgia has long been on a path of change and evolution," Abrams said. But he also said elections are about issues such as expanding Medicaid insurance and focusing government spending on public education, vocational training and small businesses.

"I am the only candidate with a plan to do this and do it without vitriol, without humiliating people," he added.

Lewis, a 78-year-old compatriot who, as a young man, was severely hit by the police as he fought for South Jim Crow's voting rights, set Georgian's choice in the broader context: "This young lady plays an important role in helping us all release , liberation of the state of Georgia, liberation of the South, liberation of America ".

Kemp did not talk about robocalls in his unique planned campaign stop Saturday at a Cuban restaurant in a different suburb of northern Atlanta.

Kemp told a crowd of compatriots that the fight for governor was a simple choice: one between the ongoing economic welfare under the leadership of the Republicans or the shift towards "socialism" under the Democrats. Kemp said the election was about "this generation and the next generations and the kind of state we leave them". It then expands Abrams' policy on healthcare and education.

The Kemp event was also plagued by many protesters. Two men protesting about Kemp's immigration policy while Kemp was on the scene were violently removed from the restaurant.

As a TV crew from MSNBC tried to shoot the hecklers removed, a Kemp promoter naturally blocked their course and view of their lens.

And someone outside the front wore a giant chicken suit holding a mark that reads "a lot of chicken for talk", referring to Kemp leaving a debate scheduled for Sunday in favor of appearing in Macon with President Donald Trump.

Much of the final race was consumed by a bitter fight for race and access to the polls.
Tensions rose after an Associated Press report in early October, according to which more than 53,000 voter requests – almost 70% of black residents – were waiting for Kemp's office before the election.

Many of the applications were flagged because they failed to pass the state's "accurate match" verification process, which requires identification information in voter registration applications to accurately match information already in the file.

Kemp's office says that eligible voters in the "pending" list can still vote if they have an appropriate ID corresponding essentially to their registration details. He called the controversy "built".

But critics say county officials are not always trained to make the right decisions, and the system can be particularly difficult to navigate the newly-naturalized citizens.

In response to a lawsuit filed by civil rights groups, a judge on Friday ruled that the state unjustly charged about 3,100 potential voters whose registration was highlighted on citizenship issues.

It ruled that Georgia should immediately start allowing opinion pollsters – not just deputies – to clear voters who demonstrate proof of nationality.

In a statement, Kemp said the trial forced the state "to lose time and dollars from taxpayers to tell the judge to do something we already do."