Twice-failed Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams is in more hot water as she faces yet another investigation. The Washington Free Beacon reported that Georgia’s secretary of state launched a probe into what were deemed “financial irregularities” with her voting-rights charity.
The New Georgia Project, which was founded by Abrams in 2013, is under scrutiny over alleged mismanagement by former executives.
Georgia's secretary of state has opened an investigation into "financial irregularities" at the New Georgia Project, a charity founded by Stacey Abrams, following several Washington Free Beacon reports.
Via @SaysSimonson & @AndrewKerrNC https://t.co/468HHhkWrx
— Washington Free Beacon (@FreeBeacon) February 28, 2023
A source told the outlet that authorities will issue subpoenas to individuals affiliated with the project. There have also been questions raised by accounting and legal experts over the group’s latest tax filings.
The New Georgia Project sped out of the gate after its founding, quickly becoming one of the leading voter registration groups in the U.S. Just since 2020, the organization along with its affiliated New Georgia Project Action Fund raised a combined $54.7 million.
But now there is trouble. Financial discrepancies include a $500,000 payment for consulting to a charity operated in part by the brother of former New Georgia Project CEO Nse Ufot.
Ufot was later terminated for reasons unknown.
The New Georgia Project also disclosed that it paid nothing in 2020 payroll taxes. This obviously raised a giant red flag.
There is also a separate investigation into the nonprofit by Georgia’s Transparency and Campaign Finance Commission. It alleged that the New Georgia Project acted illegally in attempting to get Abrams elected in her first failed campaign in 2018.
And then there’s the reports of over $25 million spent by Abrams’ voting rights organization on legal fees alone. The funds went to Lawrence & Bundy, a self-described boutique firm with less than two dozen attorneys.
One of them is named partner Allegra Lawrence-Hardy, a close friend of Abrams who was her campaign chair for her defeats in 2018 and 2022. And the $25 million in question is not all the firm received from Fair Fight Action, the candidate’s voting rights group.
And even with incredible amounts of cash flowing into the coffers, Axios reported that the latest campaign organization owes over $1 million to its vendors.
Abrams was soundly defeated by Republican incumbent Gov. Brian Kemp in November, but reported in January that she will “likely run again.” Her last campaign raked in over $100 million in donations, most of them coming from wealthy liberal donors outside the Peach State.