Georgia’s bluest counties are concentrated, not surprisingly, in Metro Atlanta but they’re not alone. Counties where Stacey Abrams (D) won extend from Metro Atlanta southwest to Columbus at the Alabama border and Albany farther south, crossing the state northeast through Macon to Augusta, with added democratic support in the college town of Athens and around Savannah on the coast. According to State estimates, these counties report populations ranging from 90,000 in Dougherty and Rockdale counties to more than 1 million in Fulton county. Of the State’s 10 largest counties, 8 of them went for Abrams.
Republican support for Kemp was spread out around the edges of Metro Atlanta and north to the Tennessee border. It continued around the state with the exception of the larger population centers which went for Abrams. Cities like Savannah and Augusta saw their outskirts go for Kemp while mid-sized towns like Warner Robins, Statesboro, Brunswick, and Valdosta went for Kemp. Populations in Kemp-leaning counties ranged from 2,300 in Quitman County to just under 250,000 in Cherokee County.
In all, 29 Counties voted majority for Abrams while 130 Counties voted for Kemp. However, because of the differing population densities of the Counties, the vote margin was less than 37,000 between the two candidates with more than 3.9 million votes cast in the election. With a third party candidate collecting just over 37,000 votes, Abrams was within 18,000 votes from a runoff, because Kemp cleared the State’s required 50%+1 hurdle by just 0.22% to win.
Voter turnout of 61.4% in the 2018 Midterm election approached Presidential turnout levels of 76.5% in 2016 for the State, far surpassing 2014 Midterm turnout of 50.0%. In Counties reporting strongest support for Abrams, turnout ranged 49% in Liberty County south of Savannah to 76% in Taliaferro County west of Augusta.
On a percentage basis, Abrams failed to meet or exceed Presidential turnout of 2016. However on a vote count basis, three democratic-leaning counties surpassed total votes cast in 2016, the largest among them was Dekalb County followed by Henry and Taliaferro Counties. Of Counties leaning for Kemp, seven of them exceeded total votes cast in 2016, including Oconee, Monroe, Morgan, and Green counties.