Reuters: Voting rights advocates decry ‘devastating’ Georgia measure limiting ballot access
Reuters: Voting rights advocates decry 'devastating' Georgia measure limiting ballot access
(Reuters) – Democrats and voting rights groups condemned on Friday a broad proposal by Georgia Republicans to limit absentee and in-person voting in the state, the latest salvo in a national fight over efforts to place new restrictions on casting a ballot.
Republicans said the sweeping measure was needed to bolster confidence in election integrity after former President Donald Trump disputed November’s results that saw Joe Biden become the first Democratic presidential candidate to win the state in 28 years.
The legislation, one of dozens of restrictive voting measures pending in Georgia, would have “devastating consequences” for voters, a coalition of voting rights groups said in an open letter to Republican state legislators. They said it was designed to reduce the influence of Black voters, whose heavy turnout helped propel Biden to victory and delivered Democrats two U.S. Senate wins in January. …
But Republicans angry about the election outcome have seized on Trump’s voter fraud claims to push a new wave of voting limitations in Georgia and across the country.
More than 150 bills proposing new voting restrictions have been introduced in state legislatures since the November election, according to Sylvia Albert, voting and elections director for good-government watchdog Common Cause.
“What we saw in this election was record turnout, and Republican legislators have responded by saying, ‘We didn’t actually want you to come vote,’” Albert said. …
Republican proposals in Georgia and other battleground states such as Pennsylvania, Arizona and Wisconsin would impose new limitations and unwind many of those rules that eased restrictions on voting by mail and extended early voting.
Albert said her group is particularly concerned about new restrictions in states where Republicans control the governorship and both houses of the legislature, such as Georgia, giving Democrats less chance to block them.