Georgia gubernatorial candidates (L-R) Clash in First Debate

Final Polls In Georgia Governor’s Race Show Stacey Abrams And Brian Kemp Deadlocked, December Runoff Likely

Kristine Lofgren - Author

Nov. 3 2018, Updated 11:58 a.m. ET

The latest polls show that Brian Kemp and Stacey Abrams are as close as they’ve ever been in the race to be Georgia’s governor. According to a poll from WSB-TV 2 and The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the two politicians are 0.2 percent apart, with Abrams leading by a slim margin, which could mean a run-off in December.

The poll, which was conducted by the University of Georgia’s School of Public and International Affairs between October 21 through October 30, shows Abrams with 46.9 percent of the vote, and Brian Kemp with 46.7 percent and 4.8 percent undecided. The poll has a 3 percent margin of error, putting the results as a statistical tie.

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This is the third poll in a row that shows the race for Georgia governor this close. If neither individual gets enough votes for a clear majority, there will be a run-off on December 4. Third party candidate Ted Metz currently has 1.6 percent of the vote, which means undecideds could determine the outcome of the election.

“This race hasn’t opened up one way or another. But the 5 percent of undecided voters are either going to make the decision to vote — or not show up at all,” said Trey Hood, UGA political scientist.

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“Mathematically there could be a runoff, but it would have to be a super squeaker.”

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Although Kemp is behind overall, he is winning with men, with 54.5 percent of the male vote to Abrams 40.5 percent. Abrams leads with women overall, with 53.4 percent to 38.9 percent. White women, on the other hand, favor Kemp 63.4 percent to 31.6 percent. Abrams is favored by 90 percent of black voters. Kemp has two-thirds of the support among white voters.

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The race between Kemp and Abrams has been garnering attention nationwide after Kemp was accused of suppressing voter turnout to benefit his own run for the governor’s seat. Kemp is currently the Georgia Secretary of State, the office of which oversees voter registration. As Secretary of State, Kemp has frozen and tossed out thousands of registrations under a variety of state policies around “exact match” standards and activity thresholds.

Over 3,000 voters who had their registrations blocked won a victory in the right to vote when a judge ruled that naturalized citizens blocked under the “exact match” standard would be able to vote.

Abrams said the ruling was “another major defeat for Brian Kemp’s voter suppression efforts” and that he “cannot be trusted to protect the votes of Georgians, and he has made no secret that he wants fewer people to vote.”

If Abrams wins, she will be the first black female governor in the nation.


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