Gov. Brian Kemp vs Stacey Abrams

This combination of 2022 and 2021 photos shows Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp, left, and gubernatorial Democratic candidate Stacey Abrams. As Republicans nationwide gear up to attack Democrats with tough-on-crime platforms in fall 2022, Abrams is making guns a central focus of her race for governor, seeking to turn crime into a liability for incumbent Republican Kemp's reelection bid.

Credit: AP Photo/Brynn Anderson

The panel: 

Greg Bluestein, @bluestein, Political reporter, Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Michael Thurmond, DeKalb County CEO

Sam Olens, @samolens, Former Georgia attorney general


The breakdown: 

1. 78% of Georgians think the country isn't on the right track. 

  • The Atlanta Journal-Constitution released a poll of likely voters. 

    • The poll of 902 likely voters was conducted between July 14 to July 22 and has a margin of error of 3.3 percentage points. 
    • It was conducted by UGA’s School of Policy and International Affairs.
  • Only 10% of likely voters say the country is on the right track.
  • Similar trends are usually seen in presidential years like 1980, 2000 and 2008.

2. Gov. Brian Kemp takes a lead over Stacey Abrams in the race for the governor's mansion. 

  • Kemp is polling at 48% and Abrams trails behind at 43%.

    • 7% of voters are undecided. 

      • A smaller amount of those polled backed Libertarian Shane Hazel and Al Bartell, an independent candidate.

3. Sen. Raphael Warnock and Herschel Walker are in a right race.

  • Warnock has a slight lead against Herschel Walker, but it remains within the margin of error. 
  • With Kemp and Warnock taking slight leads, it appears as though Georgia voters are pushing to a split ticket with support for both parties.


4. Downballot races also support cross-ticket voting. 

  • Brad Raffensperger leads Democrat Bee Nguyen 46-32 in the race for secretary of state.

    • That includes 16% of Democrats who say they’ll cross party lines to back him.
  • In In the lieutenant governor race, Republican Burt Jones edges Democrat Charlie Bailey by 41% to 36%.
    •  7% back Libertarian Ryan Graham and 16% are undecided. 

Greg Bluestein speaks on polling in the secretary of state race.


5. Challenge on Georgia's abortion law through privacy statue. 

  • The most recent challenge to Georgia's six-week abortion ban comes less than a week after a federal court of appeals decided Georgia’s strict abortion ban would immediately take effect. 
  • GPB's Riley Bunch reports that the ACLU, a group of Georgia physicians, and other advocates have filed a new lawsuit in Fulton County challenging the state's law. 

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