In an appearance on The Daily Show with Trevor Noah on Wednesday, Stacey Abrams — the 2018 and presumptive 2022 Democratic nominee to be the next governor of Georgia — compared her efforts to change election laws in the U.S. with Ukrainians fighting for their country’s sovereignty after a massive Russian military force breached its borders last week.
After Noah asserted that Republicans, including incumbent Georgia governor Brian Kemp, Abrams’s 2018 opponent, have made systematic changes to make it more difficult to vote, Abrams delivered a long answer that ended with the candidate drawing a tenuous connection between the two movements.
“We are a stronger nation when we allow people to participate,” stated Abrams before pivoting. “And if we ever doubted that, the war that Putin is waging against Ukraine — President Zelensky said, and I’m going to paraphrase him probably poorly — he said this isn’t a war on Ukraine, this is a war on democracy in Ukraine. When we allow democracy to be overtaken by those who want to choose who can be heard, and those choices are not based on anything other than animus or inconvenience, then that is wrong.”
“My mission is to make certain that everyone can cast a ballot, even people who don’t like me,” she added.
Stacey Abrams is so self-absorbed that she just compared her push to undermine fair elections with Ukraine’s invasion by a murderous dictator. pic.twitter.com/caV7N4J9IK
— Kelly Loeffler (@KLoeffler) March 3, 2022
The Georgia legislature passed and Kemp signed an election-reform bill last spring that expanded early voting, but also replaced signature verification on absentee ballots with an ID requirement and banned partisan groups from handing out food, water, or other gifts to people standing in line to vote. Abrams and President Joe Biden have both characterized the modest changes as a return to “Jim Crow” despite the fact that a number of liberal states, including New York and Biden’s home state of Delaware have more restrictive voting laws.
In Ukraine, death count estimates vary. The Ukrainian government claims that over 2,000 civilians and 21 children have perished in a little over a week of fighting, but acknowledges that “there is no exact figure.” The United Nations has confirmed 227 civilian and 13 child deaths, but concedes those are undercounts.
The Russian invasion, which has included the shelling of civilian areas, oftentimes with dangerous cluster munitions, has also a refugee crisis. One million Ukrainians have fled their country over the course of the past week.
Kemp campaign press secretary Tate Mitchell responded to Abrams’s comments by telling the Daily Mail that “this is a disgusting comparison. President Zelenskyy and the Ukrainian people are fighting for their freedom against a callous invasion that has killed innocent civilians.”
“Stacey Abrams is a political opportunist who has lined her pockets on lies about common-sense election integrity measures like voter ID,” continued Mitchell.
Abrams was on Noah’s show to promote not only her candidacy, but her new book: Level Up: Rise Above the Hidden Forces Holding Your Business Back.