Score one for Warnock and Ossoff
Finally, a real reason to be proud to be a Georgian. As CNN reported, Georgia has become the most important electorate to Democrats than any other state in the nation. While some of the swing states are made up of 10% of Black voters, Georgia boasts 33% as of 2020. Those voters overwhelmingly went for Joe Biden in the last race by 77 points. Had the Black population in Georgia not experienced such growth from 2000 to 2020, Trump would have easily carried Georgia because 30% of non-Black voters (the majority of whom were white) went for Trump. Had the Georgia Black voting population failed to change from the 23% it was in 2000, Trump would have been named the winner.
President Biden is no fool, and that’s likely part of the reason that he traveled to Atlanta to participate in the King Day events. He spoke at Ebenezer Sunday, which was Dr. King’s church and is now led by Senator Raphael Warnock. Both Warnock and Jon Ossoff were in attendance Sunday, both of whom display another center of power of the Black vote in Georgia.
Ossoff is the first Jewish senator from Georgia. Warnock is not only the first Black to represent Georgia, but he is the first Black Democrat elected to the Senate in the south. There have only been 11 Black senators in U.S. history, which seems to support the notion of voter suppression. Georgia, however, has found a way to overcome that suppression, even after the Republican legislature tried its best to make it harder to vote, and it shows in the numbers.
As CNN reported, Georgia has become the epicenter of the importance of the Black vote. Interestingly, CNN reported that Georgia is surrounded by other states that have high Black populations that are not represented by people who speak to their needs. Mississippi is one of them, as is Louisiana, with Mississippi taking the lead. The most recent census shows that Mississippi is 38.82% Black while Louisiana is also around 33%. Those states need a Stacey Abrams. She really galvanized the Black vote in Georgia, and there is no reason to think that someone of her talents couldn’t do the same in Mississippi and Louisiana. The strength of the Black vote has allowed us to send more representatives to Washington who look like us, have had similar experiences, and try to answer our needs.
It also helps in Georgia that both the Asian and Hispanic populations have grown, and they are leaning left, as are college-educated whites. Let’s face it: Republicans represent the wealthy, regardless of color, and most of us are not wealthy. That’s not to say that there isn’t a racist faction of the Republican party because there is, but overall, Republicans do not traditionally represent the values of ordinary citizens. People are finally getting smart enough to realize that.
The numbers in Georgia show how the tide turned, and as people continue to move here, those numbers will increase. Georgia may well move from purple to blue by the next election, and we have every reason to be proud of what we have accomplished to date.
Shirley is a former entertainment writer and has worked in the legal field for over 25 years