Today, lawmakers continue to hold hastily-called hearings on HB 531, their “controversial” elections bill that would severely limit Georgians’ voting rights and is blatantly targeted to “predominantly affect larger, minority-heavy Democratic strongholds of the state.”
This legislation would tear down essential ballot access measures that helped more Georgians than ever before vote in the 2020 election, including Sunday voting, which Black Georgians have used more frequently than any other demographic for years; and absentee drop boxes, which allow a secure, convenient, and timely way to return an absentee ballot. The proposals also include rejecting out-of-precinct provisional ballots and nearly halving the timeline for voters to request and submit absentee ballots.
Today’s testimony, as well as the bill’s secretive and hurried introduction, makes clear that this legislation is a dangerous, anti-democratic response to a problem that even Republicans admit does not exist.
“Attempts to rush it through aside, we know exactly what this bill is: Republicans disproportionately attacking Black and Brown voters without cause because they are terrified of losing more elections,” said Scott Hogan, Executive Director of the Democratic Party of Georgia. “They know and we know that there was no widespread voter fraud in Georgia’s elections, but Republicans are so scared of the conspiracy-theorist extremists in their party that they want to take our elections back to the Jim Crow era, and limit every element of our elections that helps more voters make their voices heard.”