Georgia, Everybody Loves You Now


gabriel conroy

Gabriel Conroy [pseudonym] is an ex-graduate student. He is happily married with no children and has about a million nieces and nephews. The views expressed by Gabriel are his alone and do not necessarily reflect those of his spouse or employer.

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11 Responses

  1. Avatar Mike Schilling

    “Georgia on My Mind” was right there.Report

  2. Avatar Chip Daniels

    As marker of where we are that a public official simply performing his duty without regard to partisan interest is considered a shocking and hotly debated issue.Report

  3. Avatar DavidTC

    Before the election, if he had been on the radar of any my liberal friends (fun fact: he wasn’t), we would have considered him one of the Very Bad People Who Must Be Condemned At All Costs.

    Not really.

    There actually is a history liberals have with Brad Raffensperger. Except it’s a history with that _office_.

    So, last election the _currently_ Secretary of State, Brian Kemp, was running for governor, and somehow, didn’t have to recuse himself from that.

    There was a…lot of irregularity in that election, including the same bullshit there is _every_ election, where for SOME reason the state government makes sure to seriously underfund voting in large population centers. The fact that you can almost make a direct linear graph of ‘length of the voting line’ and ‘percentage a county tilts Democratic’ is surely a complete coincidence.

    Brad Raffensperger won the Secretary of State position to replace Kemp.

    So, no one ‘hated’ Brad Raffensperger, but we were fully expecting we _would_ hate him, because we were expecting he would be doing the same thing. And he probably would have, and we’d all probably hate him and his ISO-standard Republican voter suppression in 2020. Which, admittedly, is not all _that position_, it’s the Georgia legislature and governor and everyone (As I’ve mentioned before, our state has _laws_ to make sure that rural counties get near-effortless voting.), but the SoS always plays a role.

    Except he didn’t have a chance to do that. Instead, we had Covid.

    And for the first time _ever_ we had an election that truly reflected the will of the state of Georgia, a state that is currently an estimated 52% white non-Hispanic.

    And the thing, the joke here is: Brad Raffensperger didn’t have anything to do with this. He didn’t make any rules, he didn’t set anything up. He made no chances whatsoever, there were no special provisions made for Covid.

    And yet we had the smoothest election ever, because half the population, including huge chunks of those high population areas that had always had long lines…voted absentee.

    Why didn’t they do that before, if it’s been possible all this time? Well, because the state has never encouraged it, has never really presented it as an option. You can live your entire life in Georgia without knowing that anyone can vote absentee for any reason. Never really thinking of it as an option.

    Suddenly, it’s something everyone is talking about, and a lot of people took it.

    And here’s the punchline: Democrats aren’t going to stop doing this. We just figured out a way to beat the voter-suppression lines! (1)

    But, because Brad Raffensperger didn’t do anything to stop this…and, really, couldn’t have…he never actually got the chance to do any voter suppression..and this might continue _into the future_ as elections here are likely to be fundamentally changed as Democrats have just figured out how to work around Republican voter suppression…so he might never end up the villain.

    Of course, it rather depends on what Republicans do when they do the math and realize exactly what has happened.

    I fully expect some of them to try to reign in absentee voting.

    1) As did a _lot_ of states, apparently.

    This election is a DAMNING indictment of EVERY SINGLE STATE that keeps somehow having ‘some large cities that screwed up the vote, and it’s the fault of the local people, usually Democrats, running the election’.

    It turns out, if you reduce the amount of voters by just only 1/3rd, the election runs completely smoothly EVEN IN THOSE PLACES, which means all those states ever had to fix things do was upsize budget and machines and everything by that amount in those cities. That was it. That would have solved every single problem! There’s no ‘incompetence’, it was simply the state not distributing enough resources per voter.Report

    • Avatar gabriel conroy in reply to DavidTC

      I’ll admit I simply didn’t read most of your comment. But I’ll take your word for it that you know more about this than I do.Report

    • Avatar gabriel conroy in reply to DavidTC


      I realize my comment was glib and I apologize. I’ve just finished reading the whole thing, and you raise some good points.

      My only counter is that my friends (and I) have done absolutely nothing to apprise ourselves of any of that. And if you had asked them (or even me) about a Republican secretary of state in a southern state, they (and probably I) would have assumed we knew what we didn’t know because we haven’t done any of the work to learn it. And now they (and I as well, even though my post snarks about it) tend to praise him, not having learned enough to know, as you point out, that he didn’t actually do anything.

      To be clear, my “counter” doesn’t obviate the points you make. So thanks for clarifying what went down.

      ETA: In addition to what I just wrote I’ll say this: If someone takes the time to write a substantive comment on my OP, I have an obligation to at least treat it with respect. I failed to do that with yours. I apologize.Report

      • Avatar RMike in reply to gabriel conroy

        Obviously, I wouldn’t know anything about your friends, but Kemp’s role as Sec of State while also running for governor was a big story, widely discussed in liberal media, both big media and social media. It was the election in which Abrams opposed Kemp, so many liberals were watching closely. The controversy was all over Twitter and Facebook, big accounts, and small, so many of us watched this election to see how Kemp’s replacement would conduct himself. If you were to search Kemp, Abrams election on Twitter, you would learn that liberals are STILL discussing Kemp’s conduct in that election with respect to the most recent election.Report

  4. Avatar LTL FTC

    The difference between a blue GA and a red GA seems to have been scandalized suburban women who couldn’t take all of Trump’s intemperate tweeting, yet the media establishment is so desperate to have Stacy Abrams as the right kind of face for Democratic victory that she’s getting a huge share of credit that doesn’t appear to be borne out by the numbers. Nonwhites as a share of the GA electorate didn’t spike, and compared to 2016, appear to have shifted rightward.

    But just like #metoo plucked Tarana Burke from relative obscurity because they needed a Strong Black WomanTM as a front to cover the self-imposed shame of privileged white women.Report

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