Abrams, Kemp set to meet in Georgia governor's debate

A bus carrying members of Black Voters Matter departs for a tour of rural Georgia after a brief sendoff rally Wednesday Aug. 22 2018 in Stockbridge Ga

A photo emerged on Monday night that showed Stacey Abrams, Georgia's Democratic candidate for governor, burning the state's flag during a protest at Georgia's Capitol in 1992 while she was a freshman at Spelman College in Atlanta.

In a statement to CNN, Abrams' campaign said that her actions in college were part of a "permitted, peaceful protest against the Confederate emblem in the flag". In the 1950s, Georgia added the "stars and bars" of the Confederate battle flag to the state flag. "This conversation was sweeping across Georgia as numerous organizations, prominent leaders, and students engaged in the ultimately successful effort to change the flag".

The state, she said, "was at a crossroads" when Abrams was in college, and was "struggling with how to overcome racially divisive issues, including symbols of the confederacy".

The GOP shenanigans are particularly dubious in Georgia, where Democrat Stacey Abrams is vying to be the first black female governor, running against Republican Brian Kemp - who as the current Georgia Secretary of State, is conveniently in charge of running the election. The latest, 2003 iteration of the Georgia state flag erases the "Stainless Banner" altogether. The state flag changed under Democratic Gov. Roy Barnes in 1993. But she also hasn't shied away from expressing her deep-seated opposition to some Confederate symbols, which she has said were meant to "terrorize" black communities.

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Last year, Abrams, 44, called for the removal of a Confederate carving in Stone Mountain, saying it was a symbol of white supremacy. Stonewall Jackson and Robert E. Lee, and President Jefferson Davis.

Speaking at a meet and greet, Booker said Abrams inspires him "like no one else ever has". "We must never celebrate those who defended slavery and tried to destroy the Union". A 20-year-old senior at the school told the paper that the protest was created to "send Georgia's racist past up in flames", and "fight fire with fire".

The Kemp campaign did not immediately respond to CNN's request for comment. "I'd have set that thing on fire too".

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