After the president gives his State of the Union speech, the opposition party gets a chance to respond. Typically, the opposition party chooses someone elected to high position, such as a senator or governor, whom they feel is a leader of the party (or maybe an up-and-coming leader). That is not the case this year.
On Tuesday, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) told reporters that Stacey Abrams, who lost the Georgia governor’s race in 2018, will deliver the Democrats’ response to President Donald Trump’s State of the Union speech. Schumer said he and House Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) both agreed that Abrams should give the response.
“She has led the charge for voting rights, which is at the root of just about everything else,” Schumer said while making the announcement.
Abrams still refuses to concede the election, and has since launched a campaign to question the legitimacy of the results.
Remember when Democrats and left-wing media outlets freaked out when Trump wouldn’t say if he would accept the results of the 2016 presidential election if Hillary Clinton won? Clinton herself said questioning the results of the election was “a direct threat to our democracy” on Twitter and in person.
Donald Trump refused to say that he’d respect the results of this election.
That’s a direct threat to our democracy.
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) October 24, 2016
After Clinton lost the election, however, she and her media supporters attempted to delegitimize Trump’s win — and they continue to do so today.
Abrams is the latest example of a Democrat refusing to accept her loss. After it was reported that Republican Brian Kemp won the Georgia governorship, Abrams refused to concede.
“I acknowledge that former Secretary of State Brian Kemp will be certified as the victor in the 2018 gubernatorial election,” Abrams said on election night.
“Let’s be clear: This is not a speech of concession because concession means to acknowledge an action is right, true or proper,” Abrams added. “As a woman of conscience and faith, I cannot concede that.”
And now the Democrats want her to give the party’s official response to Trump’s State of the Union.
One can understand how the party might not want to let one of its many 2020 presidential candidates give the speech, but letting a failed candidate give the response is odd. Abrams is considering a run for Senate against Republican Sen. David Perdue, who is up for re-election in 2020.
This appears to be the first time a politician not serving as a governor, senator, or congressman will give the response speech. Steve Beshear, the former governor of Kentucky, gave the “response” to Trump’s first annual message, but this was not considered an official “State of the Union.” Still, he was a former governor, not the former minority leader of a state house of representatives.
Maybe this will start a new trend where popular politicians from across the country that are not serving in well-known positions can get a chance for some attention. Maybe it’s not such a bad thing.