“Why Local Election Officials In Georgia Take Issue With Many Parts Of New Law”

…the legislation was being debated, and believe that parts of it will make Georgia elections more difficult and expensive. One provision that particularly worries many officials is a new ability for the State Election Board to take over a county’s election management. The law empowers the state panel to take over if, in at least two elections within two years, the board finds “nonfeasance, malfeasance, or gross negligence in the administration of…

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“GOPers Crack Down On The Private Election Grants That Helped Avoid A Pandemic Fiasco”

…ction officials can accept charity money in the future. Already this year, Georgia and Arizona have made proposed limits on private election funding law, and lawmakers have put forward similar measures in at least 11 other states (though some of those bills have stalled out or face vetoes from Democratic governors). The backlash to the charity election grants are part of a wave of legislation propelled by President Trump’s lies about his 2020 defe…

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“Hundreds of Companies Unite to Oppose Voting Limits, but Others Abstain”

…erck. A copy appeared on Wednesday in advertisements in The New York Times and The Washington Post. Last month, with only a few big companies voicing opposition to a restrictive new voting law in Georgia, Mr. Chenault and Mr. Frazier led a group of Black executives in calling on companies to get more involved in opposing similar legislation around the country….

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“How a Very Weird Quirk Might Let Michigan Republicans Limit Voting Rights”

…to hold hearings on a package of voting bills beginning Wednesday. Unlike Georgia, Florida and Texas, which have also moved to limit voting access, Michigan has a Democratic governor, Gretchen Whitmer, who said last month she would veto any bill imposing new restrictions. But unlike in other states with divided governments, Michigan’s Constitution offers Republicans a rarely used option for circumventing Ms. Whitmer’s veto. Last month, the state’…

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“Defying Republicans, Big Companies Keep the Focus on Voting Rights; A coalition of 60 law firms has joined business leaders about the need for companies to use their clout to oppose state legislation that would make it harder to vote.”

…d that could include challenging the voting law that Republicans passed in Georgia last month, and which set off a national debate over voting rights. “It puts legislators on notice that if there are laws that are unconstitutional or illegal they will face pushback from the legal community,” said Michael Waldman, president of the Brennan Center. “This is beyond the pale. You’re hearing that from the business community and you’re hearing it from th…

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“How the corporate backlash to Georgia’s new voting law is shaping other fights around the country over access to the polls”

WaPo: The fast-moving drama reveals just how powerful and combustible the issue of voting has become in U.S. politics — and how fraught it appears to be for Republicans contending with the legacy of Trump’s attacks on the 2020 election. Even as many of his supporters continue to embrace his relentless claims that the vote was stolen, those false accusations have also primed his opponents to vigorously challenge further efforts to undermine the v…

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“CEOs Plan New Push on Voting Legislation”

…n one that 72 Black executives signed last month in the wake of changes to Georgia’s voting laws. Mr. Chenault told executives on the call that several leaders had signaled they would sign on, including executives at PepsiCo Inc., PayPal Holdings Inc., T. Rowe Price Group Inc. and Hess Corp. , among others, according to the people. PayPal confirmed it has signed the statement. PepsiCo, T. Rowe Price and Hess didn’t immediately respond to requests…

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“After Georgia, Voting Fight Moves to Texas”

…y have proposed new limits for mail-in voting and other electoral changes. Georgia emerged as an early hot spot after Republicans passed a bill along party lines in late March that added vote-by-mail identification requirements and limited ballot drop boxes. Passage of the bill prompted Major League Baseball to pull this year’s All-Star game from Atlanta and garnered opposition from companies including Delta Air Lines Inc. and Coca-Cola Co. Republ…

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“The Truth About Georgia’s Voting Law”

…the law requires drop boxes for the first time, and Democratic counties in Georgia will likely have more drop boxes than they did in 2016. But Georgia Republicans are straightforwardly making it harder to vote absentee just months after Trump falsely accused these ballots of being the source of a voter-fraud fantasy.) For in-person voters, the Georgia law isn’t as restrictive. Most important, it expands early-voting periods. But the law does littl…

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“An under-the-radar voting rights bill in Congress could prevent the election fight in Georgia from happening again”

…ff in the Shelby County case.”… President Biden has repeatedly referred to Georgia’s new voting law as “Jim Crow on steroids,” while Republicans have insisted that the Georgia law is less restrictive than the ones in place in some blue states such as New York. But Hasen argues the truth is more complicated and says the new Georgia law “is a mixed bag.” “Some parts of it actually make some sense in making things better,” Hasen said. “Some parts of…

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“Georgia’s GOP lieutenant governor says Giuliani’s false fraud claims helped lead to restrictive voting law”

…ct Attorney Fani Willis, who is investigating Trump’s efforts to influence Georgia’s election results…. Georgia GOP officials who helped thwart Trump’s efforts to overturn Georgia’s election results have supported some components of the new legislation while panning other aspects of it, particularly the efforts to rein in the secretary of state’s authorities. “The secretary of state did a great job. I think that was one of the parts, too, that con…

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“Protecting American Democracy Is No Crime; New Laws Could Make Election Officials Legal Targets”

…are committed to preserving American democracy. The recently passed law in Georgia is just one example. The law has rightly been criticized for its suppressive provisions, such as one that makes it a crime for volunteers to provide in-person voters with water, even when they’ve been waiting in line for hours. Less noticed are provisions that take key powers away from election officials. SB 202 removes Georgia’s secretary of state—who stood up to T…

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“What Will Georgia’s Election Law Really Do? It’s important to look beyond the measure’s immediate effect on turnout.”

…any doors to flat-out undemocratic abuse, everyone agrees that it punishes Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger by stripping his office of its authority. That alone makes the outrage over this law justified. Raffensperger was one of several Republicans who stood up to Trump’s bullying and did their job according to the law, which is partly why the 2020 elections were unusually well-administered. Republicans should be proud of Raffensperge…

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Must-Read Nate Cohn: “Georgia’s New Law, and the Risk of Election Subversion”

…that is analytically distinct from the voter suppression concerns with the Georgia law. Although Nate links here to my recent WaPo column on what to include in H.R. 1, and suggests that it is missing a requirement of “nonpartisan election administration,” I’m not sure that would be so easy for Congress to write in terms of the structure that would apply, and it would be much harder to implement than for the one time act of drawing legislative dist…

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“If It’s Not Jim Crow, What Is It?”

…raise this because of a debate among politicians and partisans on whether Georgia’s new election law — rushed through last month by the state’s Republican legislature and signed by Gov. Brian Kemp, a Republican — is a throwback to the Jim Crow restrictions of the 20th century. Democrats say yes. “This is Jim Crow in the 21st century. It must end,” President Biden said in a statement. Republicans and conservative media personalities say no. “You k…

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“Republicans ramp up attacks on corporations over Georgia voting law, threaten ‘consequences’”

…re attacking corporations over their decision to condemn the controversial Georgia voting law, part of the party’s embrace of the populism espoused by President Donald Trump even as it creates tensions with traditional allies in the business community. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) on Monday accused corporations of siding with Democrats’ portrayal of the law as the new Jim Crow, which he called an attempt to “mislead and bully the…

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“Corporations gave over $50M to voting restriction backers”

AP: When executives from Coca-Cola and Delta Air Lines spoke out against Georgia’s new voting law as unduly restrictive last week, it seemed to signal a new activism springing from corporate America. But if leaders of the nation’s most prominent companies are going to reject lawmakers who support restrictive voting measures, they will have to abruptly reverse course. State legislators across the country who have pushed for new voting restriction…

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“Inside Corporate America’s Frantic Response to the Georgia Voting Law”

NYT: After Mr. Trump’s equivocating response to the white nationalist violence in Charlottesville, Va., in 2017, Ken Frazier, the Black chief executive of Merck, resigned from a presidential advisory group, prompting dozens of other top executives to distance themselves from the president. Last year, after the killing of George Floyd, hundreds of companies expressed solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement. But for corporations, the dispu…

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“Conservatives try to commandeer ‘the big lie’”

…to polls showing strong support for the kind of voter ID requirements that Georgia will apply to absentee ballots, as well as Washington Post fact-checks of President Biden’s false claims about the law’s effect on Georgia’s early-vote poll closing times. McConnell added that “a host of powerful people and institutions apparently think they stand to benefit from parroting this big lie.” McConnell’s statement follows on a Wall Street Journal column…

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“All eyes are on Georgia. Again.”

Politico: The fight over the future of elections in Georgia — and, some say, the soul of the nation — is playing out on multiple fronts, materializing as not only a political battle but also a legal battle, a legislative battle and a moral battle. And now, as businesses from Coke to Delta condemn the law, and Republicans threaten to retaliate by zapping their tax breaks, it’s become a corporate battle, too. On Friday, the sports world got involv…

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“Georgia’s Election Law, and Why Turnout Isn’t Easy to Turn Off”

…ctoral outcomes. The evidence suggests it does not. The fight over the new Georgia election law is only the latest example. That law, passed last week, has been condemned by Democrats as voter suppression, or even as tantamount to Jim Crow. Democrats are understandably concerned about a provision that empowers the Republican-controlled State Legislature to play a larger role in election administration. That provision has uncertain but potentially…

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“Virginia, the Old Confederacy’s Heart, Becomes a Voting Rights Bastion”

NYT: Georgia has sharply limited voting access, making drop boxes less available and forbidding anyone to hand out water to voters in line. Florida and Texas are poised to advance similar legislation. Alabama’s strict voter identification law is being used as a template elsewhere. As states across the South race to establish new voting restrictions, Virginia is bolting in the opposite direction. The Democratic governor, Ralph Northam, this week…

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“What Georgia’s Voting Law Really Does”

NYT analysis: Go page by page through Georgia’s new voting law, and one takeaway stands above all others: The Republican legislature and governor have made a breathtaking assertion of partisan power in elections, making absentee voting harder and creating restrictions and complications in the wake of narrow losses to Democrats. The New York Times has examined and annotated the law, identifying 16 provisions that hamper the right to vote for some…

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“How We Voted in 2020: A look at the Survey of the Performance of American Elections”

…trict of Columbia, and 1000 interviews were conducted in Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Michigan, Nevada, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. We’re grateful to many folks for making this year’s survey possible, including the Democracy Fund, which supported the 2020 SPAE in part. On Monday, March 29th, we released a report summarizing our findings from the survey, as well as the SPAE questionnaire and data. We encourage you to read…

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Brennan Center: Number of Suppressive Voting Bills Up to 361; 5 Laws Already Enacted

…n the largest number of restrictive bills introduced are Texas (49 bills), Georgia (25 bills), and Arizona (23 bills). Bills are actively moving in the Texas and Arizona statehouses, and Georgia enacted an omnibus voter suppression bill last week. Many bills seek to undermine the power of local officials. After county election officials conducted elections during a pandemic and stood up to pressure to manipulate the results, state lawmakers are no…

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Georgia Legislators Advance Bill Making Standing in Line to Vote Over 30 Minutes a “Loitering” Crime Subject to Imprisonment

…rohibiting the provision of even water to voters who wait in line to vote, Georgia legislators on the last day of the legislative session advanced a measure criminalizing line-standing. Under the bill, any voter waiting more than 30 minutes in a voting line may be criminally punished for illegal loitering. Governor Kemp is expected to sign the measure. “We understand in big cities, where lines typically are the longest, people want to vote like ot…

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“Georgia voter limits take root amid weakened Justice Department”

…of veto power over state voting laws it deemed racially discriminatory. In Georgia alone, federal authorities drew on Voting Rights Act powers to review legislative proposals in more than 180 instances, according to a recent lawsuit filed against the latest Georgia law. But the DOJ’s authority to screen racially suspect voting laws under this so-called preclearance process was eliminated by a 2013 ruling by the Supreme Court. As a result, voting r…

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“Hyperbole aside, Georgia’s new rules go against global principles for election fairness”

Larry Garber and Kevin Johnson: Georgia, having just emerged from close presidential and Senate elections, is ground zero in the voting rights debate. Last week Gov. Brian Kemp signed an election law overhaul passed by his fellow Republicans in charge of the General Assembly. Proponents see it as essential for ensuring ballot integrity. Voting rights activists see it as harkening to the spirit of the Jim Crow era. While there has been an element…

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“Judge rules against Georgia’s limits on third-party House candidates”

AJC: Georgia’s steep requirements for Libertarian and other third-party candidates to run for Congress are “overbroad,” shutting them out of the political process, a federal judge ruled Monday. BAN: On March 29, U.S. District Court Judge Leigh Martin May, an Obama appointee, issued an opinion in Cowen v Raffensperger, n.d., 1:17cv-4660. It invalidates the 5% petition for minor party and independent candidates for U.S. House, combined with the fi…

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“After Trump tried to intervene in the 2020 vote, state Republicans are moving to take more control of elections”

…y urged Republicans to do in the fall. On Thursday, Gov. Brian Kemp (R) of Georgia signed the most far-reaching effort yet into law — a sweeping voting measure that undercuts the power of the secretary of state and local election boards. The new law removes the secretary of state from serving as chair of the State Board of Elections, giving the legislature the authority to appoint a majority of the members, and authorizes the state board to suspen…

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“Court fight against Georgia voting overhaul no sure thing”

…, even if the contraction does not go as far as some other states (or that Georgia considered),” Hasen wrote in an email. Courts have made it harder to prove intentional racial discrimination, and “a partisan intent, even if it overlaps with race, may well not be enough,” Hasen said. State and federal courts, including judges appointed by Trump, widely rejected lawsuits brought by the former president and his supporters challenging the election re…

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“How the Supreme Court laid the path for Georgia’s new election law”

…13 Shelby County v. Holder decision written by Chief Justice John Roberts, Georgia would have had to obtain federal approval for new election practices to ensure they did not harm Blacks and other minority voters.And at another time, before the Roberts Court enhanced state latitude in a series of rulings, legislators might have hedged before enacting policies from new voter identification requirements, to a prohibition on third-party collection of…

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“Former Trump adviser takes prominent role in voting battle”

…was among the Trump advisers on a January phone call in which Trump asked Georgia election officials to “find” enough votes to declare him, and not Democrat Joe Biden, the winner of the battleground state. Now Mitchell has taken the helm of two separate efforts to push for tighter state voting laws and to fight Democratic efforts to expand access to the ballot at the federal level. She is also advising state lawmakers crafting the voting restrict…

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“Why the Georgia G.O.P.’s Voting Rollbacks Will Hit Black People Hard”

…hout one of their most essential tools to challenge new laws. For decades, Georgia has been at the center of the voting rights battle, with Democrats and advocacy groups fighting back against repeated efforts to disenfranchise Black voters in the state. As recently as 2018, Georgians faced hourslong lines to vote in many predominantly Black neighborhoods, and thousands of Black voters were purged from the voting rolls before the election. Now Repu…

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“Sweeping changes to Georgia elections signed into law”

…s, understandably, led to a crisis of confidence in the ballot box here in Georgia,” Kemp said after signing the bill. Several voting organizations filed a federal lawsuit to stop the bill Thursday night, saying it creates “unjustifiable burdens” especially on minority, young, poor and disabled voters. The lawsuit by The New Georgia Project, Black Voters Matter and Rise opposes absentee ID requirements, drop box limits, provisional ballot invalida…

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“Republicans Aim to Seize More Power Over How Elections Are Run”

…Buried in an avalanche of voting restrictions currently moving through the Georgia Statehouse are measures that would give G.O.P. lawmakers wide-ranging influence over the mechanics of voting and fundamentally alter the state’s governance of elections. The bill, which could clear the House as soon as Thursday and is likely to be passed by the Senate next week, would allow state lawmakers to seize control of county election boards and erode the pow…

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