Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Stacey Abrams
After months of speculation, Democrat Stacey Abrams has announced she is launching a campaign for Georgia governor, announcing her candidacy on Twitter and writing: "I'm running for Governor because opportunity in our state shouldn't be determined by zip code, background or access to power."
In an accompanying ad, the 47-year-old Abrams says, "If our Georgia is going to move to our next and greatest chapter, we're going to need leadership. Leadership that knows how to do the job. Leadership that doesn't take credit without also taking responsibility. Leadership that understand the true pain folks are feeling and has real plans. That's the job of governor — to fight for one Georgia. Our Georgia. And now, it's time to get the job done."
I’m running for Governor because opportunity in our state shouldn’t be determined by zip code, background or access to power. #gapol
Be a founding donor to my campaign:https://t.co/gk2lmBINfW pic.twitter.com/z14wUlo8ls
— Stacey Abrams (@staceyabrams) December 1, 2021
The longtime Democratic lawmaker narrowly lost the 2018 Georgia governor's race to current Gov. Brian Kemp, who is expected to run for reelection (setting the two up for what will likely be a hotly contested rematch).
Following her gubernatorial loss, Abrams has become one of the country's leading voices on the importance of — and challenges to — voting rights.
In an interview with PEOPLE for the March Women Changing the World issue, Abrams spoke about how she felt a responsibility to get things done.
"My family really instilled in me this belief that it's not enough to talk about what needs to be done," she says. "You've got the responsibility to try and do it."
She continued: "To me, it is absolutely the case that democracy is the medicine for the cancer of poverty, for the insistent illness and perversion of racism and sexism and bigotry. Democracy is how we ingest and make new who we can be."
Two groups founded by Abrams — the New Georgia Project and then Fair Fight — have been central to an enormous registration drive in Georgia in recent years, including some 800,000 new voters between 2018 and the 2020 election.
Those voter-registration efforts set the backdrop for November's presidential surprise, when some 5 million ballots were cast in Georgia, smashing the previous record. Joe Biden ultimately defeated Donald Trump in the state — the first Democrat to win statewide there in decades.
Abrams also has a second career as a writer of a string of hit romance thrillers and released her latest novel — a political thriller — in May.