Stacey Abrams’ Fair Fight political action committee spent almost $1.4 million on private security in 2021 for the group, according to Insider. These security payments stood out because not many political committees or candidates spend such a large sum of money on private security, reported Insider.
However, considering Abrams impact on the Georgia voter turnout last year as well as the expansion of Fair Fight to other swing states, it’s not a surprise she was concerned for the safety of her advocates while the “Stop the Steal” folks were around. Insider’s investigation found that Fair Fight, Abrams’ organization for pushing back against voting suppression, had directed more than one million in security spending to Atlanta protection firm Executive Protection Agencies.
More from Insider:
Fair Fight, which ended 2021 with nearly $19.3 million cash on hand, paid Howard’s firm alone more than $1.2 million in 2021, according to a review of disclosures filed with the Federal Election Commission. Several other private contractors received the remainder of Fair Fight’s security service payments.
It’s unclear from federal records what kinds of security services Fair Fight procured.
Insider also found the agency provided security to other Black candidates such as Sen. Ralph Warnock and Rep. Nikema Williams who were both campaigning against Trump-supporting Republicans while Trump was still in office.
Craig Holman, government affairs lobbyist for Public Citizen, told Insider the increase in government officials seeking security began with Trump and how he’s incited violence against his opposers. Those opposers were mainly Democrats.
“It’s unfortunate. I never thought I’d see the day when candidates for public office had to routinely fear for their lives and safety, but here we are. It’s the whole new American political landscape,” said Holman via Insider.
Insider reported that many members of Congress and other political committees or candidates have used campaign funds to hire security following the Jan 6. insurrection. From Insider:
Such security spending became easier in March 2021, when the FEC ruled that members of Congress could spend campaign funds on “bona fide, legitimate, professional personal security personnel.”
But some lawmakers had charged protection-related expenditures to their campaigns even before the agency’s ruling, particularly in the weeks after supporters of then-President Donald Trump attacked the US Capitol on January 6, 2021.
Abrams is going for a rematch against Republican Brian Kemp for governor this year. Republicans and other opponents have already organized to campaign against her including a “Stop Stacey” group full of Kemp campaign strategists. After her impact during the presidential elections, we can only imagine how much she’ll need security as she embarks on her campaign.