ATLANTA — Brian Kemp claims to support Georgia’s veterans and military service members, but while serving as Secretary of State he was twice called out by a federal court for failing to protect the voting rights of military service members abroad under the federal Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (UOCAVA).
Specifically, Kemp failed his duty as Secretary of State to schedule Georgia elections so that military service members overseas would have enough time to vote absentee in the event of a runoff election.
June 2012: The federal government warned that Georgia was on track to violate the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (UOCAVA), which ensured that U.S soldiers serving overseas would have enough time to vote by absentee in federal elections. The government called on Brian Kemp to do his job and comply with the law.
April 2013: Kemp not only failed to fix the election system, he previously said making changes would “place unnecessary stresses on the elections administration process.”
July 2013: The court ruled in favor of the U.S. Government and said the proposal offered by Georgia did not fully comply with federal law. The court specifically noted that “the Secretary of State… has not presented a proposal that satisfies UOCAVA advance ballot transmittal requirements.” (Order terminating the civil action, U.S. v. The State of Georgia and Brian P. Kemp, Secretary of State, 7/11/13)
July 2013: Officials for Georgia, including Brian Kemp, filed a Motion stating their request to “leave the status quo in place…” until after a final resolution on the case which would occur after the election. (Defendants’ Motion to Stay Permanent Injunction Pending Appeal, U.S. v. The State of Georgia and Brian P. Kemp, Secretary of State, 7/31/13).
The Motion was denied, with the court noting Georgia had not “met their heavy burden” and the court declined to “sanction another election cycle that does not comply with UOCAVA.”(Order Denying the Defendants’ Motion to Stay Permanent Injunction Pending Appeal, U.S. v. The State of Georgia and Brian P. Kemp, Secretary of State, 10/16/13)
February 2015: The case was closed after Georgia finally made the necessary changes to satisfy the requirements of the UOCAVA.
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