By Evan Real, The Hollywood Reporter, Posted 8:01 AM PST 11/19/2018
Although she is planning to file a federal lawsuit against the state, the former gubernatorial candidate doesn’t want Georgia’s thriving entertainment industry to suffer.
In the days that have passed since Stacey Abrams lost the gubernatorial race in Georgia’s midterm elections to governor-elect Brian Kemp, many of Abrams’ famous supporters —including actress Alyssa Milano and Veep exec producer Frank Rich — have expressed their disappointment in the outcome by urging Hollywood not to film in the Peach State.
Although she has plans to file a federal lawsuit against Georgia for the “gross mismanagement of this election,” Abrams on Saturday took to Twitter to say that she does not want the state’s thriving entertainment industry to suffer from a boycott.
“I appreciate the calls to action, but I ask all of our entertainment industry friends to support #FairFightGA – but please do not #boycottgeorgia,” wrote Abrams. “The hard-working Georgians who serve on crews & make a living here are not to blame. I promise: We will fight – and we will win.”
Abrams also responded directly to Rich on Twitter. While she said she was grateful for his support, Abrams told Rich that his support would be more useful if directed toward her #FairFightGA initiative, which she says “will pursue accountability in Georgia’s elections and integrity in the process of maintaining our voting rolls.”
“Thank you @frankrichny – but the Georgians who make a living & take care of their families through entertainment are not to blame for the gross mismanagement of our democracy here in Georgia” wrote Abrams. “We will hold folks accountable. Please lift up #FairFightGA as the call to action.”
Abrams was locked in a tight — and closely watched — race with Kemp as she campaigned to become the nation’s first black female governor. Oprah Winfrey and former President Barack Obama went to Georgia to campaign for her, while Vice President Mike Pence campaigned for Kemp.
As Georgia’s secretary of state, Kemp oversaw the election. He has been accused of voter suppression and suppressing Georgia’s black voters in particular. As the Associated Press previously reported, more than 53,000 people, nearly 70 percent of whom are black, had registrations put on hold because of minor errors that “ran afoul of the state’s ‘exact match'” requirements. Kemp has denied allegations of suppression.
Abrams finally withdrew from the gubernatorial race on Friday. But she insisted that it wasn’t a concession. Abrams explained, “Under the watch of the now former secretary of state, democracy failed Georgia. This is not a speech of concession, because concession means to acknowledge an action is right, true, or proper. As a woman of conscience and faith, I cannot concede that.”