A pollster went down to Georgia …

Source: HIT Strategies for Higher Heights

Hello ladies (and the gents in the room)!

Thought we’d pop in to give you the latest on Black women and next month’s runoff elections for both of Georgia’s U.S. Senate seats.

Turns out the sisters down in Georgia are well aware of the local and national stakes in the races between Republican incumbents Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue, and their Democratic challengers, Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff. Many already have a plan for casting their ballots. But some voter education is in order _ starting with making sure everybody knows the date on which the elections are happening.

That’s according to a new poll released Thursday by Higher Heights of America. Their researchers surveyed Black women who are registered voters in Georgia, where twin runoffs will determine which political party will gain control of the Senate.

The poll “reinforces that Black women decide elections,” said Higher Heights president and CEO Glynda Carr. She added that, while there might be some voter fatigue in Georgia given the multiple recounts from the Nov. 3 presidential election, “I certainly believe that people are going to be turning their attention to making their vote plan” for the runoffs.

Here’s what the sisters had to say:

  • Eighty-three percent of Black women voters said it is “extremely likely” that they’ll vote in January, while 11 percent said they likely would not vote.
  • The vast majority — 95 percent — care “a good deal” about who wins the runoffs. That number goes even higher for those over age 50 (97 percent) and those who live in urban areas (98 percent). A similarly large number (93 percent ) of those under 50 and those who live in rural areas said they care about the elections’ outcomes.
  • Eighty-five percent said they were aware of the elections, but only 48 percent knew the actual date is Jan. 5, 2021.
  • When asked which voting method they intended to use, 43 percent said they plan to go to the polls during early voting and 31 percent planned to vote absentee by mail. Only 14 percent said they would vote in person on Jan. 5.
Source: HIT Strategies for Higher Heights

The Georgia political figure viewed most favorably by Black women is voting rights advocate and former Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams at 82 percent, followed closely by Warnock (78 percent) and Ossoff (73 percent), the poll found. Gov. Brian Kemp, along with fellow Republicans Perdue and Loeffler, were seen unfavorably by 62 percent, 71 percent, and 70 percent respectively. Squarely in the middle was Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms, viewed favorably by 69 percent of Black women voters.

Nationally, former President Barack Obama and former first lady Michelle Obama both were seen in the most favorable light by 91 percent Black women in Georgia. President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris were seen favorably by 86 percent and 83 percent respectively, while 87 percent viewed President Donald Trump unfavorably.

Source: HIT Strategies for Higher Heights

In terms of the characteristics considered important for a candidate to have, 59 percent said a candidate should be a community leader, and 51 percent said they should be scandal-free in their professional or business pursuits.

No matter which party is in control of the Senate, 86 percent felt that their day-to-day lives are impacted by what goes on in Congress’ upper chamber. They identified as top legislative priorities the Strengthening Health Care Act, the Protecting Americans with Pre-existing Conditions Act, the HEROES Act for coronavirus relief and the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act.

This poll, conducted Nov. 20-25 by HIT Strategies, surveyed 495 Black women voters by phone and online, and has a margin of error of 4.4 percentage points.

Of course the sisters in Georgia had more than this to say. Want to unpack all the findings for yourself? Download the full report here.

That’s all for now, see you next time!!

Sonya Ross

Editor-in-Chief, Black Women Unmuted

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