A view from the ground, in Georgia.

At 12:36 pm, the final voters have left the Christian City Welcome Center, in Union City, Georgia — capping off a disastrous day for democracy.

Though the votes are still being counted, my democratic primary opponent leads. Based on what I can see. I lost.

The count is still coming in and as best as I can tell, the vote has not been certified. But so far:

This district has seen a rise of +36% above past primary — with state, local and regional turnout at record high. This number exceeds our calculated prediction of +34%. We are also happy to report that the combined vote totals for myself, and my opponent — exceed that of our Republican General Election opponent by a wide margin. In a deep red district -more people came out to vote Democrat than Republican. This bodes well for November.

And they spell an end to my bid to become your Democratic State Senator.

On the issues that matter to you — we’ve seen an influx of support for the VA Mini-hospital in our district — to become operational and federal funding has followed suit. We now believe the hospital will be operation before the second wave of pandemic grips our state. We’ve also seen support for our calls for justice in the Arbery case. But we did not see the votes we thought we’d see.

Our committee will meet soon and decide the fate of this campaign. No decisions will be made until official vote count is released.

And if we are to suspend this campaign — we will not suspend the advancement of our cause. We will not suspend our effort to make a difference in the legislation of our district, our state, or our nation. We will not cease our call to warn this state of the coming second wave of pandemic for which we, at time of writing we are as yet unprepared. We will not stop the call for science based policy nor end our call for responsive government.

Our country is in the grip of a global pandemic — and it is the work of us, the people of Georgia who have brought us to this place. But our testing , tracing, and ability to respond still do not yet meet the need that will be placed upon our district. We must all work together to avoid a second lockdown.

Our district and our state has a bright future, if we but simply lead and follow the arc of this state’s history and its accomplishment.

So based on what we’re seeing so far — we have to say: Here’s to my opponent. Congratulations on the vote count so far, and good work.

But for those of us who were already registered to vote in a state where a judicial order extended the voting so that the last person in line was taken at 10:10 in the evening, and the last vote counting at 12:36 in the morning — All who stood for hours on end in long lines — and battled through to cast your vote. Thank you. Thank you for staying in the line, and voting. Thank you for helping to restore the balance of power in our government.

But please share your story. Long lines that make you wait all day long are voter suppression. The Secretary of States office saw this coming. Gabriel Sterling and the Secretary of State’s office purposefully closed 5% of their polling stations and when districts were consolidated and polling stations closed — instead of rallying our state — they simply chose to lay blamed on the counties. The Republican led Secretary of State knew by absentee count that turnout would be high. Sterling himself, admitted on national TV that voting issues that were sent to his office in the early morning — were handled by his office by the afternoon. Simple issues that could have been corrected over the phone, things that he states “only took a few minutes”. The actions of our Secretary of State in the administration of this election should be held to task for the issues that we have seen today. If you battled through to cast your vote — and if you failed — any story that helps document what happened today — please share at story@fairfightaction.com.

We can’t say officially that it’s over — but at this point, based on numbers that I see our chance to fight on into the general election is slim. So let me take this opportunity to thank everyone who helped with this campaign. Your work has made a difference in our region, and our state. Your efforts deserve celebration and my thanks for all that you do, and all that you have done.

If the vote count we see now , is the one ends our campaign — then we’ll throw a party to end all parties. And you’re invited. More to come.

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