White House downplays Abrams' absence from voting rights speechThe White House on Tuesday downplayed the news Stacey Abrams will skip President Biden’s speech in her home state on the need to pass voting rights legislation.

Abrams, the Georgia gubernatorial candidate who has championed voting rights as her marquee issue, will not be in attendance when Biden and Vice President Harris speak in Atlanta, citing a scheduling conflict.

Biden and other White House officials shrugged off questions about her absence, given her prominent role in the state and on the issue of voting rights.

“I spoke to Stacey this morning. We have a great relationship. We got our scheduling mixed up,” Biden told reporters on Tuesday before leaving for Georgia. “We’re all on the same page.”

White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Biden and Abrams “had a warm conversation” ahead of the president’s speech.

“He saw it as a continuation of the conversation they’ve had for the last several years about their shared commitment to protecting the right to vote, to protecting democracy in this country,” Psaki said aboard Air Force One.

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