ATLANTA — As Crossover Day comes to the Georgia legislature Monday, Common Cause Georgia is watching several pieces of anti-voter legislation that would establish even more unnecessary barriers to people’s fundamental right to vote.
In order for legislation to move forward this session, it must pass at least one of the two houses in the Georgial General Assembly by the end of today.
Among the bills Common Cause Georgia has raised concerns about are:
- Senate Bill 222, which would stop election departments from accepting outside funding and assistance from third-party groups, while leaving the public underfunding of election departments unaddressed;
- House Bill 426, which would remove provisions keeping voted ballots under seal and unnecessarily open ballots to greater public inspection;
- Senate Bill 124, which seeks to limit counties’ ability to conduct their own local redistricting processes.
While one of the most worrisome pieces of voter suppression legislation, Senate Bill 221, appears to have died this session but could re-emerge later on.
Common Cause Georgia and other voting rights advocates remain concerned about many of its proposed provisions — including an inexplicable ban on ballot drop boxes in Georgia and increased scrutiny for those who are experiencing homelessness and housing displacement.
The bill also did not have a fiscal note, making it impossible for voters and Georgians to see what budget implications would accompany these weigh-ins on budget concerns to mitigate these changes.
Statement from Aunna Dennis, Common Cause Georgia’s Executive Director
Voters in Georgia know how powerful their voices are at the ballot box, which is why we face attempts year after year to further suppress our vote.
The constellation of voter suppression bills being considered would exacerbate the inequities we already contend with in Georgia, by putting even more obstacles in the way of those who want to vote.
Most harmed will be those with the least bandwidth to navigate these ever-changing voting restrictions and rules. Why is it that lawmakers are so scared of ensuring all Georgians have a say at the ballot box?
These persistent attempts to keep some of us from voting need to stop. Georgia’s elected lawmakers must get back to representing the interests of the people of Georgia instead of backing measures that dilute the voting power of the people.