Politics: Michelle Obama, Stacey Abrams team up, issue call to action on voting rights

McAuliffe nods along as Stacey Abrams tells 'Big Lie' that Georgia race was stolen from her

  McAuliffe nods along as Stacey Abrams tells 'Big Lie' that Georgia race was stolen from her Virginia Democratic gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe nodded along as Democratic activist Stacey Abrams repeated the claim that she truly won the 2018 governor's race in Georgia."You see, I'm here to tell you that just because you win doesn't mean [you've] won," Abrams declared, with McAuliffe nodding in the background. "I come from a state where I was not entitled to become the governor, but as an American citizen and as a citizen of Georgia, I'm going to fight for every person who has the right to vote to be able to cast that vote.

WASHINGTON — Former first lady Michelle Obama and Georgia Democrat Stacey Abrams have paired up in a video released Thursday to urge Americans to register to vote and call for action against new election regulations across the country.

a close up of a person wearing a mask: Former Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams waits to speak at a Democratic canvass kickoff as she campaigns for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris at Bruce Trent Park on October 24, 2020 in Las Vegas, Nevada. In-person early voting for the general election in the battleground state began on October 17 and continues through October 30. © Ethan Miller, Getty Images Former Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams waits to speak at a Democratic canvass kickoff as she campaigns for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris at Bruce Trent Park on October 24, 2020 in Las Vegas, Nevada. In-person early voting for the general election in the battleground state began on October 17 and continues through October 30.

Praising high voter turnout in the 2020 election, Obama tells viewers that voters "showed the world our power." Abrams cautions, however, that voting rights "are under attack" and calls on voters to resist the efforts.

Election truther Terry McAuliffe hosts election truther Stacey Abrams

  Election truther Terry McAuliffe hosts election truther Stacey Abrams Democratic Virginia gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe has made former President Donald Trump’s 2020 election trutherism a chief focus of his campaign. © Provided by Washington Examiner Republican candidate Glenn Youngkin, McAuliffe argues, is unfit for office because he is insufficiently outraged by the former president’s election fraud allegations. It would be a stronger argument if it came from basically anyone else. McAuliffe himself has been peddling election trutherism for the past 21 years, maintaining the repeatedly debunked fantasy that former President George W.

"Right now, dangerous legislation is being proposed across the country that limits the freedom to vote, cast our ballots and have our votes counted," Obama warns.

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Abrams argues the bills will "disproportionately impact Black, brown and working-class voters and voters with disabilities," an analysis shared by voting rights groups across the country.

"We need you in this fight with us," Obama says.

More: Voting rights bill poised for Senate action while Republicans remain opposed, Manchin offers compromise

The video was jointly produced by When We All Vote, a nonpartisan voter mobilization project founded and co-chaired by Obama, and Fair Fight Action, Abrams' nonpartisan voter turnout effort.

Virginia gives Democrats a test of Black turnout before 2022

  Virginia gives Democrats a test of Black turnout before 2022 NORFOLK, Va. (AP) — As Democrat Terry McAuliffe worked the crowd at Norfolk State University’s homecoming football game, many fans at the historically Black school were ready with answers before he could even ask for their vote. “Everybody I talked to said: ‘Don’t worry, I’ve already voted. I’ve already voted,’” McAuliffe said of his campaign stop last weekend. But McAuliffe can't afford not to worry. Polls have consistently shown him with the overwhelming support of Black Virginians, but his victory may hinge on whether this core part of his base shows up in strong numbers to vote.

The duo also outline the "game plan" of both organizations for increasing voter participation, ranging from lobbying in Washington to local civic engagement.

"We're calling on members of Congress every day to tell them to protect and strengthen our access to the ballot," Obama says, while Abrams notes that activists are "checking out voter registration status and ensuring everyone in our community is registered to vote."

"And we're working to change the future of this nation," Obama promised. "It's not going to be easy but nothing this important ever is."

Fact check: Stacey Abrams does not own 16% of election staffing agency in Georgia

After 2020, states clamp down on voting rights

Abrams, the former Democratic nominee for governor in Georgia, blamed voter suppression for her 2018 loss. Abrams has long seen expanding the electorate and combatting voter suppression as integral to Democratic politics, especially in the South.

McAuliffe claims Stacey Abrams should be governor of Georgia, furthering what some call her 'Big Lie'

  McAuliffe claims Stacey Abrams should be governor of Georgia, furthering what some call her 'Big Lie' Virginia Democratic gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe claimed that Stacey Abrams should be the governor of Georgia, accusing Brian Kemp (who ran for governor while also serving as secretary of state) of having “disenfranchised” more than 1 million Georgia voters in the state's 2018 gubernatorial election. "She would be the governor of Georgia today had the governor of Georgia not disenfranchised 1.4 million Georgia voters before the election," McAuliffe said as he introduced Abrams at a campaign event on Sunday. "That's what happened to Stacey Abrams. They took the votes away.

In 2013, she founded The New Georgia Project, an initiative focused on registering minority voters in the state. After her 2018 loss, Abrams founded Fair Fight, which focuses on voter mobilization across the country.

In the wake of President Joe Biden's 2020 victory, Republican-controlled state legislatures around the country have enacted policies ostensibly targeting election security, which advocates fear will lead to voter suppression.

Combatting alleged voter fraud has become a centerpiece of Republican politics as former President Donald Trump continues to rail against the legitimacy of the 2020 presidential election.

One-third of states have enacted policies that will make it harder to vote, according to the nonpartisan Brennan Center for Justice. There is no evidence of widespread fraud in the election, contrary to the former president's claims.

Democrats have in turn rallied around expanding voting access as both a civil rights issue and one integral to their future political success. Many in the party have attributed Biden's 2020 wins in crucial swing states like Arizona, Georgia, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin at least in part to adopting Abrams' strategies on voter mobilization.

"We need you," Abrams and Obama implore at the end of the video. "Are you in?"

Follow Matthew Brown online @mrbrownsir.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Michelle Obama, Stacey Abrams team up, issue call to action on voting rights

The fight for America's future won't be won or lost in Washington — it runs through the states .
Voting rights are in trouble — but Congress and the courts can't save us. The real fight is in state capitals Gretchen Whitmer, Tom Wolf and Tony Evers Photo illustration by Salon/Getty Images

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