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  The Trump-Country Democrat Preaching Hope in Georgia
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Last EditedIndyGeorgia  Mar 12, 2018 08:31pm
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AuthorDaniel Malloy
News DateSunday, September 24, 2017 06:00:00 PM UTC0:0
DescriptionIt usually happened fast enough to ignore: a punch, a kick, a muffled cry in the next room. But one time, when Stacey was 12, she saw her stepfather deliver a prolonged beating to her mother outside their one-story concrete slab house. It’s one of the 16 homes — trailers, mostly — Stacey can remember from a vagabond childhood with her young mom surviving on low-wage work and, at times, bad men.

The pummeling that day was more than she could bear, so Stacey called the cops. She recalls, chillingly, the voice on the other end of the phone saying that he knew her stepfather, and he “wouldn’t hurt a fly.” The police would roll by if they could. They didn’t.

It’s a story Stacey Evans has told publicly numerous times. She’s now running for governor of Georgia, sharing the kind of powerful biography political stars are made of. Barack Obama and Bill Clinton drew from fatherless childhoods; closer to home, Jimmy Carter and former Gov. Zell Miller played up their humble, rural origins to great effect.

Evans’ bid rests on the intertwined tales of her own life and Georgia’s HOPE scholarship — launched in 1993 by Miller as a guaranteed ticket to college for students with a B average. But her dream is colliding with a better-known Democrat, Stacey Abrams, who’s running on her own powerful life story and a historic quest to be the country’s first Black female governor. And she’s up against red-state Georgia, where a Democratic revival powered by minority voters has been long on hype and short on results. But Evans’ focus on education and her struggles, which are relatable to many Donald Trump backers, offer an enticing road map for her downtrodden party.
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