ATLANTA — As GOP Launched Assault on Voting Rights As Georgia Republicans continue trying to force through their self-described “reactionary” bills that restrict voting rights (despite not having “identified a problem”) in an attempt to give themselves a so-called “shot at winning,” a new AJC report breaks down how Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger “has stopped touting Georgia’s voting access policies as the General Assembly considers rolling some of them back.”
Previously, Raffensperger spent months sending out releases touting Georgia’s “automatic voter registration, at least 16 days of early voting (which has been called the ‘gold standard’), and no excuse absentee voting” — all things that his party has now advanced legislation to greatly restrict or end all together.
How often has Raffensperger done this since August alone? 35 times. Specifically, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here.
Raffensperger has already come under pressure for breaking with both House Speaker David Ralston and Governor Brian Kemp to support ending no-excuse absentee voting — before immediately trying to cover for himself by predicting it wouldn’t pass. But even as he scrambles to save his political hide, “he hasn’t taken a position on most other voting bills” that would strip Georgians’ voting rights in the legislature while quietly ending his praise for voting laws he previously touted.
“Given his track record helping to push a fake ‘voter fraud’ narrative a year ago with his sham and dangerous task force, it’s no surprise that Brad Raffensperger is standing by while his party works overtime to appease conspiracy theorists and ram through partisan, racially targeted bills to restrict voting rights,” said Fair Fight Action CEO Lauren Groh-Wargo. “Instead of working to protect Georgians’ voting rights he once bragged about, Raffensperger is apparently content to see what he calls the ‘gold standard’ of voting access get taken away.”
Read more about Raffensperger’s voting rights flip-flop:
AJC: Georgia secretary of state moves away from voting access message
By Mark Niesse
- Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger’s office has stopped touting Georgia’s voting access policies as the General Assembly considers rolling some of them back.
- Until this month, press releases and announcements from the secretary of state’s office always ended with a paragraph boasting that Georgia was the first state in the country with automatic voter registration, at least 16 days of early voting and no-excuse absentee voting.
- Those policies could be changed this legislative session. The Senate passed a bill to end no-excuse absentee voting, and the House approved a bill that would limit Sunday voting. A proposal to stop automatically registering voters at driver’s license offices didn’t advance.
- State Rep. Bee Nguyen, D-Atlanta, said the secretary of state’s office is sending a mixed message.
- “As far as I can tell, the secretary of state has been playing both sides,” Nguyen said. “On the one hand, the secretary of state has been very forthcoming about no voter fraud in the elections. On the other hand, they’re supporting some aspects of the voter suppressive bills.”
- Raffensperger has supported the elimination of no-excuse absentee voting. He hasn’t taken a position on most other voting bills besides backing stronger voter ID requirements.