Exclusive: Stacey Abrams Says the Shooting of Ahmaud Arbery Was “Murder”

In a live broadcast with Mother Jones, the Democratic powerhouse also laid out her plan for fair elections in 2020.

Stacey Abrams event flyer

Mother Jones Illustration; Photo Courtesy of Fair Fight

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In exclusive interview with Mother Jones on Thursday afternoon, former Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams was clear about how she sees the shooting of Ahmaud Arbery, an unarmed 25-year-old Black man: It’s “murder,” she said. 

“What we saw happen in that video, what I read about in those stories, is a violation of every notion of decency and justice. It was murder,” Abrams explained.

While the killing happened back in February, a Georgia prosecutor recommend a grand jury consider charges only earlier this week, after a video of the incident was made public. “That murder should be held to account and the murderer should as well,” said Abrams. “The way we get the justice we deserve is by electing people who believe we deserve that justice.” 

Abrams’ forceful response to Arbery’s slaying was a small slice of a wide-ranging interview with Mother Jones senior reporter Ari Berman. Abrams, who launched voting rights initiative Fair Fight after her 2018 loss to now-Gov. Brian Kemp, also covered the census, Kemp’s response to COVID-19, and the dangerous attempt to suppress voters during the Wisconsin primary in April. Abrams held fast to her stance that there’s no reason for elections in November to be disrupted by the pandemic. “We were able to vote during the Civil War, we were able to vote during the Spanish flu of 1918, there is no excuse for not holding our elections in 2020,” said Abrams.

For the full conversation with Abrams, watch the video below:

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THE BIG PICTURE

You expect the big picture, and it's our job at Mother Jones to give it to you. And right now, so many of the troubles we face are the making not of a virus, but of the quest for profit, political or economic (and not just from the man in the White House who could have offered leadership and comfort but instead gave us bleach).

In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," we unpack what the coronavirus crisis has meant for journalism, including Mother Jones’, and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support our nonprofit journalism with a donation: We've scoured our budget and made the cuts we can without impairing our mission, and we hope to raise $400,000 from our community of online readers to help keep our big reporting projects going because this extraordinary pandemic-plus-election year is no time to pull back.

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