Stacey Abrams says not beating Trump, but 'winning America' is key to 2020 success

Stacey Abrams, an American politician, lawyer, author, and businesswoman who was the house minority leader for the Georgia General Assembly and state representative for the 89th House District., Photo Date: May 18, 2018 / Photo: Stacey Abrams / Facebook / (MGN)
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Friday, April 12, 2019

ATLANTA (NBC) -- Stacey Abrams dodged questions Thursday about a potential presidential run, saying she wants to see how the Democratic candidates approach the 2020 campaign.

The Georgia Democrat told the Women in the World Summit, a conference attended by some of the most influential women across business, politics and technology in New York City, that she is giving "careful consideration" to a future run for the Senate, which she has said before.

“I respect most of the folks running for president. I want to see if their approach to this campaign — this fight for the soul of our country — if they’re going to approach it in a way that will actually yield the results we need,” she said.

Abrams, who narrowly lost her gubernatorial bid last year, rebuffed the idea that the Democratic Party is moving too far to the left.

“Having access to healthcare is not a leftist idea, it’s a human idea," she said. "Making enough money to take care of your family, these are not leftist ideas. These are progressive ideas … we have to stop buying into this notion that because it is different from now, it is somehow normatively outside of the box.”

She also had some advice for the 2020 presidential candidates: “Winning does not mean beating Trump. It means winning America.”

Talk of 2020 continued at the conference when Susan Rice, former national security adviser and ambassador to the United Nations, announced she would not challenge Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine in the next election.

“Like a lot of people, I was deeply disappointed when Susan Collins decided to vote for Brett Kavanaugh," she said of the Supreme Court Justice who was accused of sexual assault as a teenager before he was approved t o the Supreme Court.

"It felt like a betrayal, frankly, to all women," Rice continued. "It made me think very seriously about whether I ought to run for Senate in 2020. After weighing it all, I’ve decided with my family that the timing really isn’t right for us.”

Later, experts in artificial intelligence warned about the powers and pitfalls of the technology and touted the value of a diverse workforce in the field. Authors and professors contemplated the future of #MeToo, and the cultural factors that created the perfect storm for the movement. Journalists shared their experiences being on the front lines and putting their lives at risk in countries around the world to inform readers and viewers.

The Summit ends Friday, when it will feature Vogue editor Anna Wintour, former PepsiCo executive Indra Nooyi and Cindy McCain.