ATLANTA — Today, Georgia Republicans once again showed their contempt for voters as two of the worst voter suppression bills since Reconstruction continued to move quickly through the state legislature: SB 241 and HB 531.
SB 241 would end no-excuse mail voting, implement new ID requirements, and add witness requirements for mail voters- in essence, creating one of the most restrictive absentee voting laws in the entire country and resulting in some of the worst voter suppression since Jim Crow.
Meanwhile, HB 531 was also rushed out of committee today in a desperate attempt to force the legislation onto the floor before Crossover Day. The bill would restrict dropbox access, add new ID requirements for mail voting, and restrict weekend voting among other provisions, all of which demonstrate just how unrelenting the GOP-led Georgia legislature is in their attacks on voting rights.
Not only are these ID and witness restrictions suppressive and unnecessary, but they are also outwardly discriminatory, and would have a disparate impact on Black and other minority voters across our state, as well as older voters and voters in single-person households. These proposals would erect a juggernaut of barricades to voting access, reviving Georgia’s dark history of voter suppression and racism as state policy.
“Once again, GOP legislators in Georgia today showed the clear and urgent need for federal action to safeguard voting rights and pass HR 1 and HR 4 to protect voters from racist and malicious voter suppression,” said Fair Fight CEO Lauren Groh-Wargo. “SB 241 and HB 531 are two of the most restrictive absentee voting policies in the country. These bills are nothing less than a direct attack on voting rights in GA, framed by far-right conspiracies and disinformation that undermines our democracy and takes voting rights in Georgia back to the days of Jim Crow.”
SB 241 and HB 531 are assaults on democracy that constitute some of the worst attacks on voting rights since Reconstruction. Their progress today again shows just how critical it is that Congress pass HR 1 and HR 4 to protect voters and safeguard our democracy.