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210 Stacey Abrams Quotes on Dreaming High

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1. “Do not allow setbacks to set you back.” 

2. “Not everyone’s ambitions will be world domination or Carnegie Hall, but we should be driven beyond what we know and feel safe doing.” 

3. “Because I learned long ago that winning doesn’t always mean you get the prize. Sometimes you get progress, and that counts.” 

4. “The way to win is to try.” 

5. “We must use words to uplift and include. We can use our words to fight back against oppression and hate. But we must also channel our words into action.”

6. “If you can walk away for days, weeks, or years at a time, it is not an ambition; it’s a wish. Wishes feel good and rarely come true. Ambition, on the other hand, fuels your days and refuses to be ignored. It challenges your sense of self and fulfills your sense of wonder.” 

7. “Logic is a seductive excuse for setting low expectations. Its cool, rational precision urges you to believe that it makes sense to limit yourself. And when your goal means you’ll be the first, or one of the few, as I desired, logic tells you that if it were possible, someone else would have done it by now.”

8. “Financial independence gives us the power to decide our futures and liberate our conception of what’s possible.” 

9. “Our ability to participate in government, to elect our leaders, and to improve our lives is contingent upon our ability to access the ballot. We know in our heart of hearts that voting is a sacred right, the fount from which all other rights flow.”

10. “Like most who are underestimated, I have learned to over-perform and find soft but key ways to take credit. Because ultimately, leadership and power require the confidence to effectively wield both.”

11. “We must cease being participants in our own oppression.” 

12. “Good leaders are always at the ready, but not always at the front.”

13. “The most significant successes come from letting your light shine, embracing failure, and getting good at being wrong.”

14. “We all set our sights on jobs we want, titles we covet. But, like dating the wrong person, we have to learn to understand what is truly for us and be willing to break up to find the real thing.” 

15. “Progress is possible, but it is fragile, and across our country, the battles for our most basic civil rights rage on.” 

16. “When people doubt your right to be somewhere, the responsibility falls on you to prove over and over again that you deserve to be there.”

17. “Never tell yourself no. Let someone else do it.”

18. “When we show up, act boldly, and practice the best ways to be wrong, we fail forward. No matter where we end up, we’ve grown from where we began.”

19. “Our priorities should ideally engage heart and head.”

20. “My being a black woman is not a deficit. It is a strength. Because I could not be where I am, had I not overcome so many other barriers. Which means, you know I’m relentless, you know I’m persistent, and you know I’m smart.”

21. “I finished my higher education deeply in debt and with seven years of bad credit in my future.”

22. “Invention, discovery, and empires are built of chances taken with high degrees of failure.”

23. “We are strongest when we see the most vulnerable in our society, bear witness to their struggles, and then work to create systems to make it better.”

24. “To achieve our goals of educating bold and ambitious children, we must invest in enriching, quality early child care and learning.”

25. “When you’re focused on your enemy, then you are ignoring your allies.”

26. “I confronted the expected stereotypes by knowing what they were and building an alternate narrative about myself.”

27. “Admitting mistakes is a fundamental skill too few of us learn. In part, this is because we’ve been taught it’s wrong to be wrong.”

28. “What’s not right is giving credence to bad actions and thereby becoming complicit.”

29. “We will all, at some point, encounter hurdles to gaining access and entry, moving up and conquering self-doubt, but on the other side is the capacity to own opportunity and tell our own story.” 

30. “Because I suddenly saw an opportunity where I had never been brave enough to look before, and I found that failure wasn’t fatal, that otherness held an extraordinary power for clarity and invention.”

31. “It’s frustrating to realize we’re taught to be humble in a way that men are not.”

32. “I know we have to have people of good conscience who stand up against oppression. I know we have to have people who understand that social justice belongs to us all. And that wakes me up every morning, and that makes me fight even harder.”

33. “Effective leaders are able to say to the person they want to impress most: ‘I don’t know.'”

34. “Victory must begin to mean more than winning a single election.”

35. “From the moment I enter a room, I am clear about how I intend to be treated and how I intend to engage. I do not tell self-deprecating jokes about my race or gender, though I will do so about my personal idiosyncrasies. I can be charmingly humble or playfully self-effacing without pandering to stereotypes in order to make others comfortable. For example, my attire, my hairstyle, even my presentation style reflect me rather than aping the behavior of others. I know that when I offer criticism of men in the workplace, I may be seen as a man-hater. I know because I am not married, I may be seen as a lesbian. I know because I will never be less than curvaceous and wear my hair natural.”

36. “My heart is full.”

37. “Being a token is real, and sometimes the urge to take a backseat, so we don’t have to be the one, is tempting. But denying fear of disappointing everyone to avoid responsibility for everyone doesn’t do anyone any good either.”

38. “Leadership requires the ability to engage and to create empathy for communities with disparate needs and ideas. Telling an effective story—especially in romantic suspense—demands a similar skill set.”

39. “My romance novels really helped me think about the different lives that people lead and how important it is to tell stories so you can bring people to the table and they understand why issues matter to them.”

40. “It’s nice to like somebody and have somebody like you. I wrote a lot of books about it.”

41. “Saving democracy is not an overblown call to action—we are in trouble.“

42. “Yet, from limiting original voting rights to white men to the elitist and racist origins of the Electoral College, American democracy has always left people out of participation, by design.”

43. “Regardless of their parent’s income or zip code, every child in Georgia deserves access to a high-quality, affordable education.”

44. “Arguments continue over what constitutes true ‘identity politics’ as a philosophical construct, a public policy imperative, or a flawed means of picking candidates based solely on external characteristics rather than the candidate’s own merit. Rather than engaging in a false choice, I opt to short-circuit the debate with a more simplistic view: identity is real and necessary and intertwined in our politics in such a way that there is no going back.”

45. “We’re too often told that our mistakes are ours alone, but victory is a shared benefit.”

46. “Let’s be clear. Voter suppression is real.”

47. “I’m going to continue to do the work we’re doing on voter suppression, supporting the work that’s being done by fair count, ensuring a fair census count.”

48. “Part of the reason voter suppression works is we’ve created this culture that says you don’t challenge the outcome of elections unless the act is so egregious as to be absolutely clear on its face.”

49. “The miasma of fear that is created through voter suppression is as much about terrifying people about trying to vote as it is about actually blocking their ability to do so.”

50. “Voter suppression takes different forms.”

51. “We need to recognize that whether you’re looking at Georgia, or North Carolina, or North Dakota, or Florida that the disenfranchisement of voters, the suppression of votes, cuts across every community, and therefore, it cuts across partisanship.”

52. “Voter suppression works its might by first tripping and causing to stumble the unwanted voter then by convincing those who see the obstacle course to forfeit the race without even starting to run.”

53. “Voter suppression no longer announces itself with a document clearly labelled literacy test or poll tax. Instead, the attacks on voting rights feel like user error—and that’s intentional. When the system fails us, we can rail and try to force change. But if the problem is individual, we are trained to hide our mistakes and ignore the concerns. The fight to defend the right to vote begins with understanding where we’ve been and know where we are now.”

54. “That’s one of the fallacies of Republican talking points that have been deeply disturbing. No one has ever objected to having to prove who you are to vote. It’s been part of our nation’s history since the inception of voting.” 

55. “Voter suppression is no longer billy clubs Jim Crow. It’s closed polling sites plus 6 hour waits without pay. COVID is no excuse. Who needs to vote in person? The disabled. The homeless or displaced. Voters with language barriers. Folks who didn’t get their ballots in time. Americans.”

56. “We live in a nation that spent centuries denying the right to vote to the poor, to women, and to people of color.”

57. “We must reject the cynicism that says allowing every eligible vote to be cast and counted is a ‘power grab.’ Americans understand that these are the values our brave men and women in uniform and our veterans risk their lives to defend.”

58. “Good romantic suspense can never underestimate the audience, and the best political leaders know how to shape a compelling narrative that respects voters and paints a picture of what is to come.”

59. “I grew up hearing my parents’ stories about how they had to fight for their right to vote in the Jim Crow South.”

60. “Voting rights are the most basic tenet of our democracy and the bare minimum one should expect from the government.”

61. “They knew that he was impaired because he had parked in that driveway, and they knew when he ran away that he did not pose a danger that was a deadly force incentive.”

62. “I tried to steam it open because I watched a lot of Perry Mason. It didn’t work, and so I had to go vote in person.”

63. “No one has ever objected to having to prove who you are to vote; it’s been part of our nation’s history since the inception of voting.”

64. “Voters without a driver’s license or state ID must surrender their personal information and risk identity theft just to receive an absentee ballot.”

65. “What has been problematic is the type of restrictive ID that we’ve seen pop up. Our point is simply that the restrictions on the forms of ID should meet the needs of the people. And what he is proposing makes sense because it says what we’ve had in this country for so many decades, which is that people can prove their identity in various ways. But, we should not narrow the playing field so much that we push voters out of participation simply because of restrictions that make no sense and do not increase security.”

66. “Voters will never agree with everything you say, but they get excited to know that a politician is willing to tell them the truth. They want to trust that a candidate won’t suppress their values to try to appeal to a specific group. A voter wants to know that the one in whom they invest their time and trust is an authentic candidate who stands on the values that they hold.”

67. “Voting is a constitutional right in the United States, a right that has been reiterated three separate times via constitutional amendment.”

68. “The Stanford research also showed that had unlisted voters participated at the comparable rates to their registered peers; these voters would have handed the 2000 and 2004 elections to the Democratic presidential nominees. Not to mention the outcome in 2016, Democrats do themselves and the progressive cause a major disservice by trading efficacy for efficiency—by skipping over entire troves of potential voters, we unilaterally block ourselves from victories. Republicans are losing the demographic game, so instead, they are rigging the system. But Democrats are forfeiting elections by refusing to reach out to all of the voters who could even the score or tip the balance.”

69. “The voting system is not just political; it is economic, social, and educational. It is omnipresent, and omniscient, and it is fallible. Yet, when a structure is broken, we are fools if we simply ignore the defect in favor of pretending that our democracy isn’t cracking at the seams. Our obligation is to understand where the problem is, find a solution, and make the broken whole again.”

70. “According to the current analysis, we are running even or ahead of where we were in the 2020 November election, but we know that this is just the beginning we still have to get to Election Day, and I don’t count anything until it’s done, but we are incredibly enthusiastic not only about African-American turnout, but we have seen increases among Latino and API voters.”

71. “I believe we need leaders who actually want to lead everyone.”

72. “There are racial and gender implications to how we think about what leadership looks like in the country.”

73. “I’m a good leader. I’m a good executive. I’ve been outside the U.S. a few times, and I’ve done a little bit of foreign policy. But most importantly, I’m smart enough to be in charge of this country.”

74. “Effective leaders must be truth seekers, and that requires a willingness to understand truths other than our own.”

75. “Defeating fear of otherness means knowing who you are and what you’re trying to accomplish and leveraging that otherness to our benefit. Knowing I’d never be invited into smoke-filled rooms or to the golf course, I instead requested individual meetings with political colleagues where I asked questions and learned about their interests, creating a similar sense of camaraderie.”

76. “As a young black woman growing up in Mississippi, I learned that if you don’t raise your hand, people won’t see you, and they won’t give you attention, but it’s not about attention for being the running mate. It is about making sure that my qualifications aren’t in question because they’re not just speaking to me, they’re speaking to young black women, young women of color, young people of color, who wonder if they too can be seen.”

77. “I would share your concern about not picking a woman of color because women of color—particularly Black women—are the strongest part of the Democratic Party, but that loyalty isn’t simply how we vote, it’s how we work, and if we want to signal that that work will continue, that we’re going to reach not just to certain segments of our community, but to the entire country, then we need a ticket that reflects the diversity of America.”

78. “I’m very aware that as an African-American woman, I will be doing something no one else has done.”

79. “I’m an African American woman who is charting a very different path to doing this. I think people want to know, will it work? But I also think they’re excited by the possibility it could work. Because it changes the conversation about how we have these debates, how we run these campaigns, it shows that there’s another way to win.”

80. “Boycotts have been a critical part of social justice in American history, particularly for African-Americans.”

81. “My primary goal is to eradicate poverty; I believe it is immoral and a stain on our society. And so when I despair or get angry, I take the time to think about how I can best achieve that goal, and then I get to work.”

82. “I will stand up on issues as they arise, making sure that the voices of Georgians are always being heard.”

83. “To build a truly diverse economy with a pipeline of skilled labor, a technical college in Georgia should be free, and students should be able to graduate debt-free from the public institution of their choice.”

84. “I am driven by a desire to see poverty end and economic security be a guaranteed capacity for every person. Most of the impediments or solutions are state-driven, not federally driven.”

85. “I’m not going to do class warfare; I want to be wealthy.”

86. “I have a fairly hefty resume because I’m pretty aggressive about doing things that I think I need to do.”

87. “I’m not going to fearmonger to win an election. I’m going to focus on the positive opportunities we have for a bright future for all of our families, where everyone has the freedom and opportunity to thrive.”

88. “I think you don’t run for second place.”

89. “Fundamentally, the solution to economic insecurity is economic prosperity, an achievable goal. But for anyone who has grown up without financial security, there’s a shadow that lies over even those who move towards independence, lack of financial literacy.”

90. “I believe so, for me, the conversation that led to me writing ‘Lead from the Outside’ is that we have to start evolving what the face of leadership looks like.”

91. “In her second career as a minister, my mother defied a legacy of chauvinism to become a leader of our community. Overseeing a church that served as a hub, offering parenting classes, a food pantry, after-school programming, and—in the wake of Hurricane Katrina—a lifeline to those ravaged by loss.”

92. “While my parents both worked full-time, we still grappled with the scourge of working-class poverty, but my entrepreneurial mother used her research skills to consult. And along with my dad, she even ran a soul food restaurant for my great-aunt.”

93. “I come from a family that hunted. I know how to hunt, but I don’t do it.”

94. “I grew up in a family where my parents worked full-time and still found themselves and their six children trapped like so many of the working poor.”

95. “I grew up one of six children with working-class parents in the Deep South. My mother was a college librarian, and my father worked in a shipyard. I never saw them balance a chequebook, but they kept a roof over our heads and got all six of us into college.”

96. “I reject the idea of work-life balance. The phrase is a bald-faced lie, designed to hang over the human psyche like the Sword of Damocles because balance presumes an even distribution of weight, of value. But anyone who has ever lived understands that no set of tips or tricks can create a lifestyle equilibrium.”

97. “I do not believe in taking jobs just because the job is available. You have to want to do that job, and you should plan to be there for a while.”

98. “At any given moment, we each face a barrage of obligations, often disparate and distinct from what we thought would happen when we woke up. From the tragic to the common to the extraordinary, life refuses to be divvied up into careful slices of time. No technology can manage to overcome the realities of reality.”

99. “I’m proud to be a member of the creative class, particularly here in Atlanta, where the entertainment and creative industries form such an integral part of our economy, our culture, and our community.”

100. “‘First things first’ might be a cliche, but it’s a useful one that means prioritizing what matters most to you and believing there is no wrong answer. When it comes to figuring this out for yourself, the careful binary of work or life entirely misses the point.”

101. “As a state representative, I have consistently supported our state’s investment in Israel and our vocal support of Israel’s right to exist.”

102. “I like to take information in and let it percolate.”

103. “My approach to running for office has always been driven by where can I do the most good and where are my skills best applied.”

104. “I do not Google myself, I do not read comments, and I barely look myself in the eye when I look in the mirror.”

105. “I was born trying to figure out why other kids were just playing in a circle. What are you doing in the circle? Duck, duck, goose? What is the goose supposed to do? You could be organizing; you could be producing products that are for sale. You have a circle, but how are you utilizing it?”

106. “Anti-abortion rules disproportionately harm women of color and low-income women of every ethnicity affecting their economic capacity and threatening their very lives.”

107. “I fundamentally agree with the critical nature of Israeli democracy, which embraces the core notion of free speech.”

108. “Where I know my strengths lie, for me, is establishing systems and protocols, finding solutions, and trying to push for results. The Senate is a great institution, but for me, it’s not the role that best suits those needs.”

109. “No, I’m not an optimist. I am an ameliorist, which is something I made up. I believe that the glass is half full. It’s just probably poisoned. And so my job is always to be on the hunt for the antidote.”

110. “I know that my resume is usually reduced to ‘she didn’t become the governor of Georgia.’ But it is important to understand all the things I did to prepare for that contest; that campaign was not a whim. It was the outcome of decades of deliberate work building my capacity to serve as many people as I could, in the most effective way possible.”

111. “Writing fueled me, and my task was to make it fit into my life. I practiced my trade as an attorney, and on weekends and holidays, I typed away. I assumed a nom de plume, Selena Montgomery, to separate my fiction from more academic publications.”

112. “I have been privileged to write across multiple facets of my life, to write romance novels, to write a memoir, to write about leadership, and to write tax and social policy articles. The act of writing is integral to who I am. I’m a writer, a politician, a tax attorney, a civic leader, and an entrepreneur. I am proud of what I’ve accomplished.”

113. “When I began writing novels, I read Aristotle to learn how to perfect structure, Pearl Cleage to sustain tension and Nora Roberts for characterization.”

114. “Writing is a side hustle that had previously enabled me to pay for rehab for my brother, purchase a car for my parents, and help friends out when they fell on hard times.”

115. “As a writer and former elected official, I believe in the power of words.”

116. “The consequences for failure are very different if you’re a woman or a person of color than they are if you’re a guy. If you’re a guy who makes a mistake, you get a second chance. Often, for those of us who are outsiders, we make a mistake, and that’s the end of the conversation.”

117. “A guy can try something and not be successful, and it’s just about him. But when you’re a person of color, when you’re a woman—when you’re a woman of color—in particular, you mess it up, and other people get tarred by your decision-making. You never act alone.”

118. “Facebook captures examples of inequality and makes them available for endless replay. Twitter links the voiceless to newsmakers. Instagram immortalizes the faces and consequences of discrimination. Isolated cruelties are yoked into a powerful narrative of marginalization that spurs a common cause.”

119. “We continue to confront racism from our past and our present, which is why we must hold everyone, from the highest offices to our own families, accountable for racist words and deeds and call racism what it is, wrong.”

120. “Economic inequality is systemic, and one of the most effective barriers is ignorance about how money works beyond the basics.”

121. “Here in Georgia, we continue to grapple with our own vestiges of hate. The image carved into Stone Mountain, like confederate monuments across this state, stand as constant reminders of racism, intolerance, and division.”

122. “Money dictates nearly step of social mobility from the very first moments of life. How much our parents make often determines whether we go to college. It affects the jobs we get offered and the ones we can afford to take.”

123. “Economic security can feel like an impossible goal when you’re living paycheck to paycheck, deciding between paying the light bill or the water bill, knowing the decision to pay either one may mean you can’t put food on the table.”

124. “The basis for sustainable progress is legal protections grounded in an awareness of how identity has been used to deny the opportunity.”

125. “Discriminatory legislation emboldens those who seek to make us afraid while giving those communities it hurts a concrete reason to fear. We must stay away from anti-immigrant legislation as well as so-called religious freedom legislation that harms our LGBTQ communities.”

126. “Confederate monuments belong in museums where we can study and reflect on that terrible history, not in places of honor across our state.”

127. “One of the traditional rites of passage for political candidates is the revelation of financial status—a catechism—like the recital of money, mistakes made, and debts owed.”

128. “The marginalized did not create identity politics, their identities have been forced on them by dominant groups, and politics is the most effective method of revolt.”

129. “When you go after someone who has a deep ideological belief set that is contradictory with your own, it’s conversion. Conversion is hard. Conversion is miraculous. We have entire religions built around the idea of conversion. Politics is not a religion. Politics is about persuasion.”

130. “Identity politics forces those who ask for our support to do their jobs. To understand that the self-made man got zoned into a good school district and received a high-quality education, one that wouldn’t have existed if his zip code changed by a digit. To recognize that the woman on welfare with three kids is the product of divorce in a state where she risks losing food stamps if her low-wage job pays her too much. Or that the homeless junkie is an Iraq War veteran who was in the National Guard but lost his job due to multiple deployments and didn’t qualify for full VA care. And that the laborer is a migrant farmworker who overstayed his visa to care for his American-born children. Single-strand identities do not exist in a household, let alone in a nation.”

131. “The formerly incarcerated—returning citizens—often face a cruel irony in America. Having paid their debt to society, too many are banned from the ballot box that could help them dismantle policies that essentially extend their sentences.”

132. “I revered the civil rights movement and appreciated the laws that granted us the right to ride buses, to sit at lunch counters, to cast ballots. But the slowness of real change fueled the riots’ intensity, from coast to coast. Decades later, inequality still ravaged poor and black communities. Then toss in the continued international struggle to end apartheid, the skyrocketing incarceration rates that scooped up too many of black folks’ , and a youth poverty rate that defied the wealth of the era. I knew the truth behind their rage.”

133. “Citizens tried to exercise their constitutional rights and were still denied the ability to elect their leaders. Under the watch of the now-former secretary of state, democracy failed Georgia.”

134. “Running in a primary to be the vice president is very different than someone who has been selected by the party to be the nominee asking you to serve as a partner. I am open to all options.”

135. “Moreover, because only Maine and Vermont allow the incarcerated to vote, prisoners in every other state have no political voice. To put a finer point on it, America’s mass incarceration has led to thousands of black and Latino bodies from Democratic-leaning areas being counted in rural white communities that are typically Republican, where most of the penal facilities are located.”

136. “To make a good decision, you actually need to think about it, the contours and the consequences.”

137. “My mother grew up in abject poverty in Mississippi, an elementary school dropout. Yet, with the support of women around her, she returned to school and graduated as class valedictorian—the only one of her seven siblings to finish high school. She became a librarian and then a United Methodist minister.”

138. “I got into my first fight, Democrat versus Republican, in second grade. I won.”

139. “I like to solve problems. I know it is a skill set, but it’s also an obligation. I grew up with parents who believe that you don’t simply complain, you try to find solutions and fix what’s in front of you.”

140. “My life has always been about making certain I accrue the skills necessary to make my ambitions real.”

141. “I like solving problems that seem intractable. That’s how I thrive.”

142. “Our obligation, in Georgia and across the nation, is to seize the high road by changing how we campaign and to whom.”

143. “When I was in high school at the age of 17—I graduated from high school in Decatur, Georgia as valedictorian of my high school—I was very proud of myself.”

144. “Many books that tell you how to achieve come from a privileged position. If you can’t see yourself in the advice, how can you use it?”

145. “I think that I am a skilled communicator. I think I’m a very good thinker. No, I know I’m a good thinker. I know I have policy chops. I have foreign policy experience.”

146. “Where I think historians can help preserve and actually restore democracy is to remind us of how we got it.”

147. “From making it harder to register, and stay on the rolls, to moving and closing polling places, to rejecting lawful ballots, we can no longer ignore these threats to democracy.”

148. “Clean energy jobs can exist across the state and create micro-economies to support struggling communities. Local governments can use advanced energy to re-train workers and create local jobs, and the positive economic impacts can remain local.”

149. “From the beginning of this catastrophe, Governor Kemp has demonstrated that Governor Kemp has absolutely no competency in this process.”

150. “I am not calling for violent revolt here. We’ve done that twice in our nation’s history—to claim our freedom from tyranny and when we fought a civil war to recognize the humanity of blacks held in bondage. Yet, as millions are stripped of their rights, we live out the policy consequences, from lethal pollution running through poor communities to kindergartners practicing active shooter drills taught with nursery rhymes. I question what remedy remains. The questions that confront me every day are how to defend this sacred right and our democracy, and who will do so.”

151. “By fully committing to our public education system and engaging holistically from cradle to career, we can guarantee that all of our children in Georgia—no matter their needs—have the kinds of teachers and neighbors in their lives that my mother had.”

152. “We cannot expect systemic success when our teachers are underpaid and under-resourced, or when they split time being caretakers and counselors for our children as well.”

153. “Educating bold and ambitious children from cradle to career stands as a clear and foundational goal for Georgia.”

154. “A dreamer—a young person brought to the United States without documentation—asked me about her future after high school. She had applied to colleges in the state, but Georgia’s rules forbade her from being accepted to the flagship universities, despite her qualifications. Other state schools were required to charge her out-of-state tuition, at costs that could be nearly four times as high.”

155. “Quality educational care grows resilient children, provides support for working families and stability for employers, makes Georgia more competitive, and invests in the workforce of the future, beginning in early childhood.”

156. “Hydro, wind, solar, and biomass energy have an economic impact across the state and—with collaboration and focus—can become engines of prosperity for more Georgians.”

157. “We deserve an economy that works in every county—for every Georgian—and helps families thrive, not just survive.”

158. “Georgians understand obligation, love of family, and payment plans.”

159. “In Georgia and around the country, people are striving for a middle class where a salary truly equals economic security. But instead, families’ hopes are being crushed by Republican leadership that ignores real life or just doesn’t understand it.”

160. “Georgia still has a decision to make about who we will be in the next election. And the one after that. And the one after that, so we have used this election and its aftermath to diagnose what has been broken in our process.”

161. “Make no mistake, the former secretary of state was deliberate and intentional in his actions. I know that eight years of systematic disenfranchisement, disinvestment, and incompetence had its desired effect on the electoral process in Georgia.”

162. “We’re in country. I’ve got to win Georgia. I’ve got to turn out more Democrats everywhere.”

163. “In front of the most powerful place in Georgia, telling me I don’t belong there, that’s resonated with me for the last 20 years. The reality is having a right to be placed does not always mean that you’ll gain admission.”

164. “Voter suppression is not simply about being told ‘no,’ it’s about being told it is going to be hard to cast a ballot. And that’s the deeper concern that I have. Because under eight years of leadership, Mr. Kemp has created an atmosphere of fear around the right to vote in the state of Georgia.”

165. “The mechanisms of voter suppression have transformed access to democracy in ways that continue to reshape not only our partisan politics but the way we live our daily lives. In 2020, a poor woman in South Georgia, miles away from a doctor or a hospital, may discover her too late to make a choice. If she makes more than $6,000 per year, she is too rich to qualify for Medicaid and too impoverished to afford anything else because the governor refuses to expand the program. If she is black in Georgia, she is three times more likely to die of complications during or after her pregnancy than a white woman in the same position.”

166. “Remember this in the darkest moments, when the work doesn’t seem worth it, and change seems just out of reach, out of our willingness to push through comes a tremendous power. Use it.”

167. “Money and power make people irrational.”

168. “People already in power almost never have to think about whether they belong in the room, much less if they would be listened to, once inside.”

169. “The right to be seen. The right to be heard. The right to direct the course of history are markers of power.”

170. “The practical reality is that where you live determines your ability to marry, buy a house, get an abortion, or start a business, and creating equality in these areas has usually required federal action to guarantee basic rights. Thus, by recognizing and harnessing the power of nonfederal offices, those who long for a more homogenous, segregated bygone era have grown stronger and more resilient.”

171. “Race and sexual orientation shared common threats, but not identical ones, and when she stood too firmly on one side, she stood accused of ignoring the other.”

172. “These men—and they are usually men and typically white—do not have to grapple with low expectations based on gender or race or class. Ambition for them begins with reminiscences of old times and older friendships or newer alliances. The ends have already been decided, with only the means to be discussed.”

173. “Part of the responsibility is to have honest and authentic conversations about race. What we have to talk about is how race intersects with power. And my mission is to demonstrate that we can change the face of power, evolve it to include more people and people of different complexions and different backgrounds without diminishing anyone else’s access to opportunity.”

174. “To put the gap in stark racial terms, in America in 2013, the average wealth per household was $81,000. But averages have highs and lows. When you disaggregate the numbers, white families average $142,000 in wealth, Latinos come in at $13,700, and black families bring up the rear at $11,000.”

175. “The codification of racism and disenfranchisement is a feature of our lawmaking—not an oversight. And the original sin of the U.S. Constitution began by identifying blacks in America as three-fifths human, counting black bodies as property and their souls as nonexistent.”

176. “I need women of color, particularly black women, to understand that our achievements should not be diminished.”

177. “Full citizenship rights are the bare minimum one should expect from the government. Yet, for two-thirds of our history, full citizenship was denied to those who built this country from theory to life.”

178. “And over the centuries, we clawed out access to the ballot for people of color through the Fifteenth Amendment, women in the Nineteenth Amendment, and young voters in the Twenty-Sixth Amendment. But each of those amendments contained a loophole for suppression, leaving implementation to the states, particularly the ones most hostile to inclusion.”

179. “When you know that what you are doing is going to have a disproportionate effect on people of color and on women and you do it anyway, that erodes the public trust in the system, and that’s problematic.”

180. “For those who cling to the days of monochromatic American identity, the sweep of change strikes a fundamental fear of not being a part of an America that is multicultural and multicoloured. In their minds, the way of life that has sustained them faces an existential crisis, and the response has been vicious, calculated, and effective.”

181. “The anchors of belief should never weigh down the capacity for thoughtful engagement and reasonable compromise.”

182. “Names matter; labels matter. We should always pursue the highest title available and fight for the labels that reflect our clout.”

183. “Not only must we stop telling ourselves no, we have to internalize our right to make mistakes and to use each error as an entry point to more knowledge.”

184. “Demography is not destiny; it’s opportunity. We have to expand our vision of who belongs in the big tent of progress, invest in their inclusion, and talk to them about what’s at stake.”

185. “At its most complex, ambition should be an animation of the soul. Not simply a job, but a disquiet that requires you to take action.”

186. “You cannot have those things you refuse to dream of.”

187. “We are, by our natures, often required to manufacture our own breaks, identify new openings even before others know they exist. The best hack is to know this is the case, accept it, and move on, prepared to take full advantage. And then do it all over again.”

188. “We can not win by pretending to be something we are not. My mission is to demonstrate that if we bring everyone to the table, we can win.”

189. “We have seen dramatic turnout among communities that typically are not at the top of mind for candidates. We have seen them be engaged, be encouraged, and we have seen them turn out.”

190. “We have been working at this for more than a decade. And there have been dozens of organizations and hundreds of people who’ve made this their primary mission.”

191. “The best allies own their privilege not as a badge of honor but as a reminder to be constantly listening and learning to become better at offering support to others.”

192. “Choices are based on personal needs—end of the story.”

193. “The worry is that while trying to push a false opening of the economy, we risk putting more lives in danger, and there’s nothing about this that makes sense.”

194. “The most economically vulnerable are struggling to survive, unable to afford groceries or medicines for their children, let alone cover utilities, car payments, and rent.”

195. “By undermining confidence in the system, modern-day suppression has swapped rabid dogs and cops with billy clubs for restrictive voter ID and tangled rules for participation. And those who are most vulnerable to suppression become the most susceptible to passing on that reluctance to others.”

196. “Don’t stand there holding the ball if a freight train’s headed for you. Can’t play in the second quarter if you’re dead.”

197. “The United States must no longer be a patchwork of good, bad, and worst states for voters. A degradation of democracy based on state lines and zip codes. Being an eligible citizen should be sufficient for full participation.”

198. “Today, the ones barring access have shifted from using billy clubs and hoses to using convoluted rules to make it harder to register and stay on the rolls, cast a ballot, or have that ballot counted. To move forward, we must understand the extent to which the shrinking conservative minority will go to create barriers to democracy.”

199. “Finding the truth requires three simple questions, she explained, and they must be answered in any investigation. One, what is the problem? Two, why is it a problem? Three, how do you solve it?”

200. “No one born into the minority has the luxury of giving up, even if we do not win enough of the time.”

201. “That’s just always the way my mind has worked, is taking something that seems impossible, or too big, and then breaking it down into these pieces so that I know how to get there.”

202. “We paid our canvassers a living wage, and we trained them on scripts that spoke about jobs, health care, justice, education, the environment, and housing. The campaign scaled up our already large and diverse in-house filmmaking and digital team, again using core, consistent messaging with the widest array of communication tools.”

203. “There will be legitimate fears about using absentee ballots. We have to use every tool in the toolbox.”

204. “We’re not ready to return to normal.”

205. “I would argue that identity politics is exactly who we are, and it’s exactly how we won.”

206. “The notion of identity politics has been peddled for the last ten years, and it’s been used as a dog whistle to say that we shouldn’t pay too much attention to the new voices coming into progress.”

207. “The shutdown was a stunt engineered by the president of the United States, one that defied every tenet of fairness and abandoned not just our people but our values.”

208. “I want our friends to come from around the country.”

209. “Our state’s rich and complicated history courses through our memories on nights like tonight, when the unexpected becomes the truth.”

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