Aside from her political work, Abrams is also an award-winning author of romantic suspense novels. She writes under the pen name "Selena Montgomery," and her eight books have sold more than 100,000 copies.
Since releasing her personal financial information earlier this year, Abrams has faced scrutiny regarding financial missteps and debt. In a column for Fortune, she reflected on owing the IRS over $50,000 in deferred taxes and owing more than $170,000 in credit card and student loan debt.
"I am in debt, but I am not alone," wrote Abrams. "Debt is a millstone that weighs down more than three-quarters of Americans. It can determine whether we are able to run for office, to launch a business, to quit a job we hate. But it should not — and cannot — be a disqualification for ambition."
As the breadwinner of her family, Abrams says she is responsible for taking care of her parents, grandmother and niece. She told Baldwin that her experiences have shown her how important it is for Georgia residents to "have a leader who can make the choices to make sure everything is taken care of."
She also believes that poverty is immoral. "I think it is economically inefficient and I think it's solvable. And I think no matter what space you stand in to tackle those challenges, the opportunity to make things better is always there."
As a candidate for governor, Abrams says she is committed to making housing more affordable, creating high-quality educational opportunities for all children, enforcing anti-discrimination laws, enforcing gun-safety laws, providing affordable healthcare and advancing criminal justice reform.
At a recent rally in Macon, Georgia, she spoke about the role her identity plays in making her uniquely qualified to serve as the state's next governor. In Georgia, 21 percent of black and Latina women live in poverty, compared to 11 percent of white women.
"I don't want anyone to elect me because I'm black, and I don't need anyone to pick my name because I'm a woman," The Washington Post reports her saying. "But I need you to know that because I'm a black woman, I understand the barriers to opportunity in the state of Georgia; because I'm a black woman, I understand how hard you have to work sometimes to get as far as you can; and because I'm a black woman, I know that when I make history, I make history with you."
Like this story? Subscribe to CNBC Make It on YouTube!
Meet Ayanna Pressley, the Democrat who could become Massachusetts' first black Congresswoman