El Astral regresa al Mediterráneo en misión de observación y denuncia

El velero Astral de la ONG de Badalona Proactiva Open Arms ha zarpado este miércoles 19 de agosto rumbo al Mediterráneo central, donde realizará una misión de observación y vigilancia durante las próximas semanas.

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One Good Thing: The sweet, animated melancholy of Kiki’s Delivery Service
Studio Ghibli’s animated film Kiki’s Delivery Service. | Studio Ghibli, Amanda Northrop/Vox The Studio Ghibli classic is the most wistful movie about teen witches ever. One Good Thing is Vox’s recommendations series. In each edition, we’ll tell you about something from the world of culture that we think you should check out. This week, in honor of Halloween, we’re summoning five recommendations involving witches. The mood swings, the acne, the awkwardness, the loneliness: There is no good advice for how to survive the many inevitable plagues on our teenage years. But Kiki, the teenage witch at the center of Studio Ghibli’s masterful animated film Kiki’s Delivery Service, provides a stellar example of how to make it through the terrible teen years that will resonate even if puberty is way behind you. (And it may even become your favorite movie of all time, if you’re like me, who has loved this movie since she was five years old.) Kiki suffers through age 13 with a beautiful dose of literal magic, dangling the promise of something fantastical in front of a powerful coming-of-age story. The anime film was released in 1989, just ahead of a glut of 1990s pop culture that focused on teenage girls. Kiki did the whole figuring-herself-out thing first — way before Britney Spears came along and made the sentiment of “I’m Not a Girl, Not Yet a Woman” so catchy and radio-friendly. Kiki’s Delivery Service operates on two levels: First, it’s a delightful film about the adventures of a young witch. Kiki’s learning how to ride her broom, making friends with humans instead of only hanging out with her black cat, and figuring out what her special magical talent is. Kiki hails from a town where every woman is a witch, and in her world, formal witch training starts at age 13. Girls are given a broom and a black dress; then, they’re off on their own to find a witch-free city or town where they feel they will be able to adequately challenge themselves to master their magic. And in the process, they must hone a special skill that best suits their personality and particular witching abilities. Once Kiki chooses a place where folks have only heard tell of witches, she spends a lot of time trying to win people over, all while banging into walls and failing to gather her inner magical powers to get her broom flying. Her trials and errors can be funny to watch, but they’re also dreamy to think about: What might it be like to be in her shoes and learning how to fly? Kiki’s training quest is exciting to watch for anyone who likes magic and broomsticks and black dresses, although director Hayao Miyazaki’s portrayal of witchiness isn’t like that of, say, The Wizard of Oz or Halloweentown. (A closer corollary might be the original Sabrina the Teenage Witch TV series on ABC, but Sabrina was way more otherworldly and boy-crazy.) Instead, Kiki is a mostly normal little girl who also inherited the ability to fly through the air from her mother. In this world, the ability to perform magic is a female trait; we don’t meet any male witches or wizards or warlocks. Even if the characters’ powers are more low-key than those of other witching tales, that magic feels empowering and beautiful and mystical. Which is where the second, stronger level of Kiki’s Delivery Service lies. Kiki wants to be like her mother, which means she wants to be a grown-up, powerful witch, and quickly. But there is no speeding through age 13, and figuring out what kind of magic she’s good at takes Kiki much longer than she thinks it ought to. Her titular delivery service — she starts a business transporting gifts and packages via her broomstick — is a way to both get to know people in the seaside town she’s landed in and a chance to flex her flying muscles. But she succeeds only thanks to the help of different (non-witch) maternal figures who enter her life throughout the film. From a pregnant baker who takes her in, to a kind old woman who becomes Kiki’s surrogate grandmother (especially after we find out the woman’s own granddaughter is just the worst teen), Kiki ekes by on the kindness of other women. Studio Ghibli/GKids Kiki is truly one of the most relatable teens in any medium. Accepting the wisdom and guidance of other women is an important part of growing into one, even if much of the journey is personal. What makes Kiki’s Delivery Service haunting isn’t when Kiki’s magic fails her and she fears that she has lost her ability to fly forever. It’s the emotional aftermath: None of her non-witch, older lady friends can help Kiki get her powers back. She must develop her own self-confidence, learn to understand her own emotions, and build a belief in herself and her strength. These are tremendous asks of a teenage girl, and the solutions are complex and unpredictable. Watching Kiki figure out how to face challenges and overcome them — whether they’re magical or not — is what makes this film so beautiful. Kiki’s Delivery Service might not be the prototypical witch movie for someone in the Halloween mood. It’s so much more than that: It is a romantic, unforgettable journey into the magical unknown that anyone who has ever freaked out about growing up knows too well. Kiki’s Delivery Service is available to stream on HBO Max. Help keep Vox free for all Millions turn to Vox each month to understand what’s happening in the news, from the coronavirus crisis to a racial reckoning to what is, quite possibly, the most consequential presidential election of our lifetimes. Our mission has never been more vital than it is in this moment: to empower you through understanding. But our distinctive brand of explanatory journalism takes resources. Even when the economy and the news advertising market recovers, your support will be a critical part of sustaining our resource-intensive work. If you have already contributed, thank you. If you haven’t, please consider helping everyone make sense of an increasingly chaotic world: Contribute today from as little as $3.
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Young Latinx voters could be the ones who finally flip Arizona 
Kassandra Alvarez, an organizer who lives in South Phoenix, Arizona, says her activism was motivated by SB 1070, the hardline anti-immigration bill. | Ash Ponders for Vox “This is a chance for us to say, ‘Not in our state. We’re not letting this happen anymore.’” Kassandra Alvarez remembers the anxiety she felt growing up in Arizona. Alvarez, 27, was in high school when the Arizona state legislature passed SB 1070 — one of the most restrictive anti-immigration bills in the country. The legislation, which was approved in 2010, enabled police to demand federal registration papers from anyone who they believed was an undocumented immigrant. Those who didn’t have papers could be detained or even deported. Alvarez’s entire family, all of whom were undocumented at the time, were forced to make a contingency plan. “When SB 1070 passed, you had to get training on how to protect yourself,” she told Vox. “There was no other way to survive in Arizona.” After the bill — which became known as the “show me your papers” law — went into effect, many Arizonans left the state out of fear. But Alvarez’s family decided to stay: If any of them got stopped, they planned to call a local lawmaker. “My friend was pulled over with a broken taillight and he was put in jail,” Alvarez recalls. Ash Ponders for Vox Young Latinx voters like Alvarez could be the deciding factor for flipping Arizona. Ash Ponders for Vox Political posters in Phoenix, Arizona. Used to intimidate thousands of immigrants in the state, SB 1070 was a turning point for growing engagement of Latinx voters in Arizona, according to local organizers. Ten years later, many Arizonans who were children when SB 1070 passed are now eligible voters, eager to vote out President Donald Trump, who’s promoted similarly racist policies. Much of Trump’s presidency has built on the same xenophobia as the Arizona law: He has described Mexican Americans as “criminals” and “rapists,” promised to build a wall along the southern border, and enforced a zero-tolerance immigration policy that’s led to thousands of family separations, among a long list of discriminatory actions. “What has pushed me the farthest away is he’s become a symbol of hate for my community,” says Alvarez. “The worry of whether my sisters are going to be able to apply for DACA again has been hanging over our heads for so long. When do we get to breathe?” SB 1070 is still on the books but several of its main provisions were overturned by the Supreme Court in 2012 — and weakened by the Arizona state government in a 2016 settlement. Young Latinx voters who were activated by SB 1070, like Alvarez, could be a deciding factor in flipping the state for Democrats. In 2016, Trump won Arizona by just 3.5 points — and a little over 91,000 votes. According to data from advocacy group Mi Familia Vota, 103,000 Latinx people in Arizona reached voting age between 2018 and 2020 alone. And Latinx voters’ overall share of the state’s electorate has grown from 19.6 percent in 2016 to 24.6 percent in 2020. While Latinx voters are no monolith — one-fifth of Latinx Arizonans who responded to an October Unidos US poll said they’re backing Trump, for example — many younger voters lean more progressive, and a dedicated group of organizers has been working with their peers to oust the president. After discovering in high school that she was undocumented, Alvarez became deeply involved in advocacy for immigrant rights and education access. She now works in public relations for a community college in Phoenix, and recently served as a delegate for Sen. Bernie Sanders for the Democratic National Convention. She’s among a growing group of younger voters who are increasingly politically mobilized. “I was 9 or 10 when SB 1070 passed. I still remember it. I remember the protests. Seeing politicians attack people like us and our family members,” says Jacob Martinez, 19, an Arizona organizer for NextGen America. “That was a big part of my growing up. This is a chance for us to say, ‘Not in our state. We’re not letting this happen anymore.’” The organizing movement that exploded after SB 1070 could be the same one that pushes Trump out There’s been a growing organizing movement in Arizona for decades, and local activists say SB 1070 was a real tipping point. “It not only galvanized Latinos and organizers, it energized people from other states,” says Arizona State University political science professor Lisa Magana. In a direct response to SB 1070, activists founded a grassroots movement called One Arizona. This coalition — which now includes over 20 organizations — has been dedicated to registering people to vote, educating residents about civic engagement efforts like the census, and championing racial justice. In 2018, One Arizona registered 190,000 voters, and it nearly matched that number this cycle. The effects of this movement have been wide-ranging. Many of the early organizers during SB 1070 have now become state legislators, according to Melissa Armas, a coordinator for the advocacy group Aqui Se Vota. They include Phoenix City Councilmember Carlos Garcia, state Rep. Raquel Teran and state Sen. Martin Quezada. And voters in the state say it’s changed the way they talk about their own heritage and immigration in Arizona. “I am a proud daughter of immigrants. Growing up in Arizona, you couldn’t express that you were part of the Latino community,” says Priscilla Acosta, 28. Jonathan Gibby/Getty Images Immigrant rights advocates held a day of protest in Phoenix, Arizona, on the same day the Supreme Court heard arguments over SB 1070 on April 25, 2012. While Trump’s presidency has promoted the same type of racist practices that former Arizona leaders like Sheriff Joe Arpaio became known for, the pushback to these discriminatory policies has grown since 2010. In 2016, even as Trump was elected to the presidency, Arpaio — who was synonymous with targeting immigrants as Maricopa County Sheriff — lost his race for reelection, in large part due to organizers who mobilized against him. Most recently, Arpaio also lost the Republican primary for the job this year. The surge in activism since SB 1070 has also coincided with a massive demographic shift in the state. In 2008, roughly 796,000 Latinx residents were eligible voters, while nearly 1.2 million are this year. Exit polls have found that Latinx voters predominantly backed the Democratic candidate in recent elections: 70 percent supported Sen. Kyrsten Sinema in 2018, and 61 percent supported Hillary Clinton in 2016. According to the October Unidos US poll, 67 percent of registered Latinx voters in Arizona say they support Biden. Latinx voter turnout also surged in Arizona during the 2018 midterms, and that momentum is only expected to continue this cycle. “There were concerns that Latino voters wouldn’t turn out in 2018, and we saw record numbers,” says Latino Decisions researcher Edward Vargas. During the midterms, Latinx turnout was up 96 percent compared to 2014, according to Latino Decisions. “The Latinx vote definitely has the power to swing this election,” says Lexy Reyelts, an Arizona organizer for NextGen America. Trump’s treatment of immigration and health care have disproportionately affected members of the Latinx community Both the immigration and health care policies of Trump’s presidency have had major effects on members of the Latinx community. “When I was younger, it felt like the wild, wild West. You could have people come to the grocery story and not come back,” says Acosta. “That’s what I’m fearful of in the Trump administration, that all that progress we’ve finally done will get rolled back.” Trump has actively targeted immigrants repeatedly, including Mexican Americans, who make up a large proportion of the Latinx electorate in Arizona, and lean more Democratic on average. Whether it’s comments he’s made about how a judge wouldn’t be impartial to his case because of the judge’s Mexican heritage — or his repeated use of the term “bad hombre” to invoke an unseen threat, Trump is someone that voters describe as normalizing racism toward the Latinx community. Policies that Trump has pushed include repeated efforts to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program — which shielded young unauthorized immigrants from deportation — an ICE hotline where people can report alleged crimes by immigrants, and stringent restriction on asylum seekers. Olivier Touron/AFP via Getty Images Trump supporters pass out signs before a rally in Prescott, Arizona, on October 19. “As a DACA recipient, it’s hard to advocate for yourself when there’s racist policies in place and, bottom line, they don’t want you here,” says Ramon Chavez, 27, who adds that a path to citizenship for DACA recipients has been among the chief issues where he’d like to see a clear plan. “It’s tough to live two years at a time,” he says. Health care is also a top issue for many Latinx voters, especially in the wake of Trump’s botched handling of the Covid-19 pandemic, which disproportionately affected people of color — including in Arizona. “Latinx people were dying at higher rates than white people during the pandemic,” says Reyelts. According to an analysis by APM Research Lab, there have been 77 deaths per 100,000 Latinx residents in the state, while there have been 62 deaths per 100,000 white residents in the state. Multiple voters also emphasized that they were focused on preserving the Affordable Care Act, which Trump has said he’d like to repeal while offering no clear proposal for how he’d replace it. “For the most part, Covid-19 and the cost of health care are overwhelmingly top issues,” says Vargas. Biden isn’t necessarily many voters’ first choice, but some see him as their only one Younger Latinx voters say they’re backing Biden not because he’s their top pick but because he’s their only one. “He’s not my first choice, or my second, but I think he’s someone we can work with,” says Alvarez. Many young Latinx voters I spoke with cited Biden’s track record on criminal justice reform — including his work on the 1994 crime bill — as well as his past stance on sanctuary cities as reasons they aren’t enthused about his candidacy. Many do view him, however, as a far superior alternative to Trump. “I don’t think Biden has any transformational ideas about where to take this country, but he feels like someone for the time being who can stop the bleeding,” says Gregorio Montes De Oca, 32. Multiple voters, however, told Vox that they felt like Biden’s outreach to Latinx voters in the state has been lacking. “There are people that think the Latinx vote is being taken for granted,” says Chavez. Biden’s campaign emphasizes that it’s been dedicated to connecting with Arizonans on different platforms, with both the candidate and vice presidential nominee Sen. Kamala Harris visiting the state in recent weeks. “Our team has made historic investments in reaching Latino voters by building a culturally competent program that has prioritized building relationships with community leaders, organizing every region by hosting social distanced events and daily phonebanks, and a robust bilingual digital, mail and paid media program to reach every voter across the state,” Luz Jimenez, Arizona Deputy Press Secretary for Latino Media said in a statement. A Trump campaign spokesperson also noted that it’s established a “permanent presence” since 2016 and invested in regional ad buys, voter registration drives, and Zoom meet-ups. Trump and his surrogates have paid multiple visits to the state as well. Ariana Drehsler/AFP via Getty Images Cher speaks during a campaign rally for Joe Biden in Phoenix, Arizona, on October 25. As Vox’s Nicole Narea has reported, Biden’s limited investment in Latinx voters has worried political observers including Chuck Rocha, a former senior campaign adviser for Sanders, who was concerned that he hadn’t committed more resources to regional organizations. In Arizona specifically, polling has also found that Biden has a potential weakness with male voters under 50, who are more likely to view Trump’s handling of the economy favorably. An Equis Research poll in September found that 42 percent of young Latinx men were considering Trump for the presidency, compared to 16 percent of young women, 24 percent of older women, and 34 percent of older men. According to an October Alliance for Youth survey, 33 percent of young Latinx voters in battleground states had not been contacted by the Biden campaign at that time. “I’m not sure I’ve seen him reaching out to the Latinx community in particular,” says graduate student Destina Bermejo, 23, an Arizonan who’s actively against Trump but still wary of Biden. Ash Ponders for Vox A small truck, encouraging folks to vote, sits outside the offices of Promise Arizona in South Phoenix, Arizona, on October 26. Ash Ponders for Vox A home draped in a Trump 2020 flag in the Jade Park neighborhood of South Phoenix, Arizona. Bermejo tells Vox that she was unsure whether, given his prior record, she could trust Biden to implement the changes she’d like to see when it came to immigration policy. She’d like to see more detail, for example, on how he’d prevent abuses by the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency, which was criticized for its detention policies during the Obama administration. “Why am I going to trust this white man who is supposed to be representing the Latino community?” she asks. “I hate Trump, but it doesn’t mean I like Biden, either.” Voters instead said that the energy they saw in state — and found most inspiring — was coming predominantly from the movement built by regional leaders. “I’m getting to know people in my own community to build something better,” said Bermejo. Most emphasized, too, that their vote and their support for Biden was the only way to go right now. “For myself, my sisters are DACA recipients, my dad is undocumented, it’s really out of survival,” says Alvarez. Will you help keep Vox free for all? The United States is in the middle of one of the most consequential presidential elections of our lifetimes. It’s essential that all Americans are able to access clear, concise information on what the outcome of the election could mean for their lives, and the lives of their families and communities. That is our mission at Vox. But our distinctive brand of explanatory journalism takes resources. Even when the economy and the news advertising market recovers, your support will be a critical part of sustaining our resource-intensive work. If you have already contributed, thank you. If you haven’t, please consider helping everyone understand this presidential election: Contribute today from as little as $3.
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Democratic candidates for Senate Rev. Raphael Warnock (left) and Jon Ossoff arrive for a campaign event in Jonesboro, Georgia, on October 27. The two are hoping to unseat incumbent Sens. David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler. | Brynn Anderson/AP There’s a chance both of Georgia’s Senate races could be decided next year. Georgia, a once-solidly Republican state, has not one but two competitive Senate races this year. Driven by booming and quickly-diversifying suburbs outside Atlanta, and suburban women fleeing the Republican party under President Donald Trump, these trends could give Democrats Jon Ossoff and Rev. Raphael Warnock a shot at winning. “The fact we’re even talking about a competitive race in Georgia tells you the impact of demographic change on American politics,” Republican pollster Whit Ayres recently told Vox. Ayres, for one, thinks traditionally southern states like Georgia and Texas are still a few yearsaway from being true swing states. But Democrats in the state aren’t so sure. “Our time is now,” 2018 gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams, the founder of voting rights group Fair Fight, told Vox in an email interview. “We’re in a strong position; our message to voters is that when we overwhelm the system with our voices, we will win.” In one Senate race, Republican Sen. David Perdue faces Ossoff, who narrowly lost a 2017 Georgia Congressional race in a district Democrats flipped the next year. Then there’s a less conventional — and far more crowded — special election race to replace retiring Republican Sen. Johnny Isakson. A whopping 20 candidates running in the special election, but the three at the top are Republican incumbent Sen. Kelly Loeffler (appointed to replace Isakson in 2019), Democrat and senior pastor of the Ebenezer Baptist Church pastor Warnock, and conservative Rep. Doug Collins, who is running to Loeffler’s right. Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images President Trump greets Rep. Doug Collins, Sen. Kelly Loeffler, and Sen. David Perdue (right) in Marietta on September 25. If no candidate clears a threshold of 50 percent, Georgia Senate races go to a federal runoff election, scheduled for January 5, 2021. The special election is widely expected to go to a runoff. Polls have shown Warnock in the lead, with Loeffler and Collins splitting the Republican vote, but no one close to 50 percent. The regular election between Perdue and Ossoff is also incredibly tight; a recent Atlanta Journal-Constitution poll showed Ossoff just one point ahead of the Republican incumbent — a statistical tie at 46 percent to 45 percent. The same poll found Trump and Democrat Joe Biden essentially tied as well. Another recent New York Times/Siena College poll found Ossoff and Perdue tied at 43 percent each. The big question in Georgia politics these days is not just whether Democrats can pull off a win — it’s also whether there will be two runoffs this winter. For the “special election, it’s a surety,” said University of Georgia political science professor George Bullock. “For the other one, if indeed the polling is accurate, then I think it’s a high probability.” The traditional Senate race, explained This spring, Sen. Perdue gave a group of GOP activists an unvarnished warning about the coming election year. “Here’s the reality: The state of Georgia is in play,” Perdue said on a call obtained by CNN. “The Democrats have made it that way.” Perdue was initially considered one of the more insulated senatorsin a year where Republicans were defending a lot of territory. Perdue is conservative and business-friendly, and a staunch defender of the president in a historically Republican state. He’s a multi-millionaire former CEO of companies like Reebok and Dollar General, and lives in a gated community on Georgia’s ultra-wealthy Sea Island. “The fact we’re even talking about a competitive race in Georgia tells you the impact of demographic change on American politics” “He has been absent for six years, I mean completely absent,” said Georgia state Sen. Jen Jordan, a Democrat. “No town halls, no public events, nothing. It’s not like he’s at his local Kroger.” Even more warning signs started to appear in the spring, as polls showed the race between Perdue and investigative journalist and 2017 congressional candidate Jon Ossoff tightening. “From day one we’ve known that this will be one of the most competitive races in the country,” Perdue campaign spokesman John Burke told Vox in a statement, adding, “We are confident that Georgians will re-elect Sen. Perdue on November 3rd.” Atlanta’s diversifying suburbs were already worrisome for Republicans. The party is also watching as existing trends are being hastened a combination of white suburban voters moving away from Trump, and increased turnout among Black voters. “Counties and suburbs of Atlanta are moving at light speed away from Republicans,” said Cook Political Report Senate editor Jessica Taylor, who rates both Georgia races as tossups. “Trump has accelerated a more natural evolution, but that has made it hard.” While Perdue has spent the race painting Ossoff as a “socialist” with a “radical agenda,” Ossoff has spent his campaign talking about anti-corruption reforms, racial justice, and lowering the cost of health care. Ossoff told Vox that if he’s elected, anti-corruption reforms — including a Constitutional amendment overturning Citizens United, a corporate PAC ban, and a ban on stock trading by sitting senators — will be his first priority in the Senate. Brynn Anderson/AP Common (right) speaks to a crowd during a campaign event with Democratic candidates for Senate Jon Ossoff and Rev. Raphael Warnock in Jonesboro on October 27. Elijah Nouvelage/Getty Images Ossoff takes a photo with a supporter in Lithonia on October 3. The third item is a direct shot at Perdue and Loeffler, both of whom have taken heat for stock trades made after they received classified briefings on the Covid-19 pandemic while they were in office. Both have denied the allegations of wrongdoing, and say that the trades were made by outside advisers, without their knowledge. “The necessity of anti-corruption reforms also cuts through the partisan divide because everyone recognizes the political system is corrupt,” Ossoff said in an interview. “Everyone recognizes that it’s a systemic issue more than it’s a partisan issue. The key is connecting it to people’s daily lives: The outrageous price of prescription drugs, the abuses that we face daily, from insurance companies, the way that polluters are empowered to destroy our clean air and clean water.” Beyond policy, Ossoff also gets a boost in Democratic circles from his 2017 congressional campaign in Georgia’s 6th Congressional district — a traditionally Republican district that’s part of Atlanta’s suburbs. Even though Ossoff ultimately lost that race, multiple sources told Vox that Ossoff’s 2017 race energized a contingent of disillusioned white suburban women and Black voters, and helped beef up Democratic organizing in the area. Democrats flipped the district the following year, electing Democratic Rep. Lucy McBath. “Democrats really were in the wilderness since at least 2002,” Jordan told Vox. “No power, Republicans weren’t even being challenged. Jon runs for this congressional [seat] and all of a sudden you see these women in the Atlanta suburbs coming out in droves to support him and work for him.” Ossoff recognizes the changing demographics of the Atlanta suburbs are a growing source of energy for Democrats in state, combined with a “massive” investment in party infrastructure. “I was out marching with NAACP in July, and it was people of all backgrounds, races ages, from all regions participating,” he told Vox. “This is driving the collapse of the GOP southern strategy, their approach to politics in the south since Nixon has been to divide voters along racial and cultural lines. And now we have this multiracial coalition ... that GOP strategy is breaking down.” The special election, explained Most Georgia politics observers expect we won’t know the winner of the special Senate election for a few more months. The crowded field for the Georgia’s special election ultimately comes down to three people: Warnock, Loeffler, and Doug Collins, the ranking member of the House Judiciary Committee and a staunch Trump ally. The Democratic side has mostly cleared for Warnock, but polls show Republican voters are split between Loeffler and Collins. (Matt Lieberman, son of former vice presidential candidate and Sen. Joe Lieberman, is also running, but has seen his support disappear as the race heated up and Warnock was endorsed by party leaders including former President Barack Obama.) The New York Times polling showed Warnock leading both Republicans at 32 percent, with Loeffler getting 23 percent of Republican support compared to 17 percent for Collins. A couple surveys have shown Warnock inching into 40 percent territory, but the conventional wisdom among many is that he won’t be able to clear 50 percent by November 3. John Bazemore/AP Sen. Kelly Loeffler waves to a crowd of Trump supporters during a campaign rally in Macon on October 16. “He is opening a lead over either of the Republicans,” said Bullock, the University of Georgia professor. Loeffler and Collins, on the other hand, appear to be splitting the Republican vote pretty evenly. “If you add the vote for those two together, it comes close to equalling the vote for Perdue and the vote for Trump.” For Warnock and whichever Republican emerges out of the special election, there’s an open question of whether voter enthusiasm will remain high in January. Turnout will likely be lower then, and if Joe Biden wins the White House, Democrats run the risk of Republican turnout being energized to put a check on a Democratic president. Appointed by Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp in 2019 as part of an effort to stop the exodus of white suburban womenfrom the Republican party, Loeffler has taken a hard right turn towards Trump — even advertising in an ad that she’s “more conservative than Attila the Hun.” Loeffler was recently endorsed by controversial Congressional candidate Marjorie Taylor Greene, who espouses the baseless “Q Anon” conspiracy theory. If her original goal was to draw in disaffected suburban women, that might be more difficult. (Loeffler’s campaign didn’t respond to Vox’s request for comment). “She didn’t really have a persona,” said Jordan, the Democratic state senator. “She was known as being really rich and one of the owners of the WNBA” team in Atlanta. On the Democratic side, the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee early on backed Raphael Warnock, the senior pastor of the storied Ebenezer Baptist Church. Warnock’s church has a storied legacy; it’s where civil rights icon Martin Luther King Jr. served as pastor in the 1960s. Alyssa Pointer-Pool/Getty Images Rev. Raphael Warnock offers a benediction to close the funeral service of the late Rep. John Lewis at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta on July 30. “Georgia is the home state of Martin Luther King Jr.,” Warnock told Vox in an interview. “It has long been the tip of the spear for change in America. And I think that through this movement we’re building, it once again will be a central focus for that change.” Even in 2020, the fight for racial justice and civil rights has been difficult. Georgia was the site of two shocking killings of black men this year alone: First, the shooting death of jogger Ahmaud Arbery in his neighborhood by two white men, and then the police shooting of Rayshard Brooks a few weeks after George Floyd’s killing in Minneapolis. Warnock delivered the eulogy for Brooks this summer. “It was one of the toughest things I’ve had to do in my ministry,” he told Vox. “The thing that that I remember the most was talking to his eight-year-old daughter. Earlier that day, she had been celebrating her eighth birthday party with her dad. And from now on her birthday will be associated with his last day. That is too much for any child to have to bear.” Warnock said issues of racial justice are not just “theoretical” to him. One of his early ads was about his experience at age 12 being dragged out of a store and accused of shoplifting, simply for having his hands in his pockets. “All these years later, while we have made considerable progress, we’re still fighting voter suppression and police brutality,” Warnock told Vox. “What I’m most inspired by is the appropriate restlessness of the yell. I think that they’re justified in their discontent.” Georgia’s demographics are changing rapidly The center of Georgia’s demographic change are Atlanta’s growing and diversifying suburbs. Business is booming in Atlanta, and so is population. Between 2010 and 2019, the area’s population shot up from about 5.3 million people to over than 6 million, according to data from the US Census, reported by Curbed. That growth put the Atlanta metro area fourth in growth nationwide, behind Houston and Dallas, Texas, and Phoenix, Arizona (Senate seats in Texas and Arizona are also considered Democratic targets this year). “Every area in metro Atlanta is growing,” said state Rep. Angelika Kausche, a Democrat. “People come here for the education, for the schools, for the quality of life.” That has brought legions of diverse, younger voters to Atlanta’s metro area. Amid the influx to the Atlanta suburbs, political observers in Georgia have been watching elections get closer and closer. In the 2018 governor’s race, Abrams lost to then-Secretary of State Brian Kemp by a little more than 50,000 votes — a scare for Georgia Republicans. Alyssa Pointer/Atlanta Journal-Constitution via AP Stacey Abrams attended the funeral service for John Lewis. “Stacey Abrams lost by less than 55,000 votes out of 4 million in an election, which her opponent was also the umpire,” Warnock said. “With his thumb firmly on the scale, he barely squeaked by less than 55,000 votes.” Abrams’s group Fair Fight and other voting rights groups like the New Georgia Project have been putting a ton of effort into registering and turning out Black voters in high rates this year. The state has already hit record registration levels, with about 7.6 million voters registered. And since early voting started, over 2.7 million voters have cast ballots. “We’re going to have record turnout,” said Abrams. “We’ve already had half a million more Georgians cast their ballots than did for the entire early voting period of 2016. Georgia has by far the largest percentage of Black voters of any battleground state.” Aaron Ross Coleman contributed reporting. Will you help keep Vox free for all? The United States is in the middle of one of the most consequential presidential elections of our lifetimes. It’s essential that all Americans are able to access clear, concise information on what the outcome of the election could mean for their lives, and the lives of their families and communities. That is our mission at Vox. But our distinctive brand of explanatory journalism takes resources. Even when the economy and the news advertising market recovers, your support will be a critical part of sustaining our resource-intensive work. If you have already contributed, thank you. If you haven’t, please consider helping everyone understand this presidential election: Contribute today from as little as $3.
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