For Immediate Release: Wednesday, January 20, 2021
Today Reverend Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff, two champions for reproductive freedom, were sworn in to the U.S. Senate, cementing Democratic control of the Senate. Senators Warnock and Ossoff were sworn in by Vice President Kamala Harris and, respectively, are the first Black and Jewish Senators to represent Georgia. Their victories—which came two months after a majority of Georgians voted for a Democratic presidential ticket for the first time in nearly 30 years—followed unprecedented voter turnout in the January 5 runoff elections.
NARAL Pro-Choice America launched its Georgia chapter in 2017, heeding the call of leaders like Stacey Abrams and seeing the power and potential in the state with meaningful investment. NARAL Pro-Choice Georgia has spent the last three years laying the foundation to help flip Georgia blue, mobilizing tens of thousands of voters to turn out for candidates like Warnock, Ossoff, and President Biden who support reproductive freedom and gender equality.
In response to this historic moment, NARAL Pro-Choice America President Ilyse Hogue released the following statement:
“Today NARAL and our 2.5 million members nationwide celebrate the swearing-in of Senators Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff, both of whom will be true champions for reproductive freedom in Congress. This historic moment is possible because of the tireless work of a multi-racial, multi-generational coalition of organizers—led by Black women—who spent years fighting to ensure that Georgians are represented by leaders who share their values. We are proud to have been a part of the movement to elect Georgia’s first Black and Jewish Senators. Their vision for our country and commitment to equality could not be more needed as our nation moves toward healing from the damage inflicted by the Trump administration and 10 years of a Republican-controlled Senate. Now, the work begins.”
In the three years leading up to 2020, NARAL Pro-Choice Georgia made strategic investments toward building the grassroots and political capital necessary to protect and expand reproductive freedom, not just for Georgians, but for every body in the region who relies on Georgia’s providers for abortion care.
NARAL endorsed Warnock and Ossoff as part of its largest-ever electoral program designed to hold senators like Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue accountable for rubber-stamping Donald Trump’s extreme ideological agenda. NARAL reached over 3 million voters in key states, including Georgia, through its historic program. The program reached hundreds of thousands of Georgians and included 316,690 peer-to-peer texts, a robust direct mail program with candidate-specific mail pieces to reach 242,010 voters, influencer amplification, digital ads generating 13,483,532 impressions, and two radio ad campaigns in partnership with Higher Heights Political Fund.
In the two months between the Nov. 3 general election and the Jan. 5 runoffs, NARAL and its volunteer leaders held 20 voter mobilization events, made more than 164,000 calls, sent nearly 100,000 texts, and emailed more than 20,000 Georgia voters. NARAL also partnered with Higher Heights for America, Fair Fight, and Planned Parenthood Action Fund (PPAF) to host a number of events, including a panel conversation with Stacey Abrams, PPAF President Alexis McGill Johnson, and NARAL President Ilyse Hogue. The panel centered on the issues that drove this election: the Black maternal mortality crisis, healthcare disparities, and the need for comprehensive, affordable healthcare, including sexual and reproductive healthcare.
For over 50 years, NARAL Pro-Choice America and its network of state affiliates and chapters have fought to protect and advance reproductive freedom—including access to abortion, contraception, and paid family leave—for every body. NARAL is powered by its more than 2.5 million members from every state and congressional district in the country, representing the 7 in 10 Americans who believe every person should have the freedom to make the best decision for themselves about if, when, and how to raise a family.