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Stacey Abrams campaign asks judge to delay vote certifications
Stacey Abrams.jpg
Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams speaks to supporters Nov. 6, 2018, about a suspected run-off during an election night watch party in Atlanta. - photo by Associated Press

Another lawsuit has been filed in the still unsettled race for governor.

Democrat Stacey Abrams’ campaign went to federal court Sunday asking a judge to delay vote certifications by one day until Wednesday. It also asks a judge to require that officials count any votes that were rejected improperly.

The suit points to alleged problems with provisional and absentee votes in populous DeKalb and Gwinnett counties in metro Atlanta.

Republican Brian Kemp’s campaign didn’t have any immediate comment. It’s previously said it’s numerically impossible for Abrams to force a runoff by closing his margin of nearly 59,000 votes.

The Abrams campaign continued to maintain the race is still “too close to call” and there may still be enough votes to at least force a runoff.

“In short, our legal strategy is simple: Count every vote. Count the provisional ballots, count the absentee ballots and do not rush the process,” campaign manager Lauren Groh-Wargo said in a media teleconference.

“The bottom line is this race is not over. It’s too close to call, and we cannot have confidence in the secretary of state’s numbers,” she said. “There are 5,000 votes that came in yesterday that weren’t previously even known about, that came online largely for Stacey Abrams. Five thousand is a big number when you consider we are about 20,000 away from a runoff.”

As of Sunday, Nov. 11, the Associated Press was reporting unofficial returns showing Kemp with 50.3 percent of almost 4 million total votes, or a roughly 63,000-vote lead over Abrams.

The margin is enough for an outright Kemp victory if totals remain the same, but it’s a tight race considering the large turnout.

Abrams has argued that tens of thousands of provisional and military ballots need to be counted before the race is over.

The Kemp campaign said a maximum of 17,495 provisional and military ballots remain to be counted. The Abrams campaign has contended at least 30,823 votes remain, including nearly 27,000 provisional ballots; that could be enough to prompt a recount.

AP hasn’t declared a winner.

Meanwhile, Kemp has pressed Abrams to concede.

His campaign issued a statement Saturday that said it was mathematically impossible for Abrams to even force a runoff, much less win outright. It called Abrams’ refusals to concede “a disgrace to democracy” that “completely ignore the will of the people.”

But members of civil rights groups, including the Atlanta-based Southern Christian Leadership Conference and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, held a small rally urging Abrams to keep fighting until every vote is counted.

“That is a promise she made,” said Ben Williams, president of the Cobb County branch of the SCLC, founded by the late Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.

Erick Allen, a black Democrat newly elected to the Georgia House, said allegations of voter suppression and questions about Election Day problems could dog Kemp as governor if he ultimately prevails.

“The erosion in trust is done,” Allen said.

Abrams is seeking to become the first black woman elected governor in the United States, while Kemp is attempting to continue GOP dominance in a diversifying state that could be a battleground in the 2020 presidential election.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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