Georgia Law That Democrats Said Would Suppress Votes Seems To Be Bringing More Of Them

By Rachel Morris | Sunday, 22 May 2022 12:00
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Despite passing an election security law last year that critics asserted was “voter suppression” and President Joe Biden tied to “Jim Crow,” Georgia has seen a record-breaking turnout for early voting.

According to data gathered by Georgia Votes, 539,297 people cast ballots in the state as of Tuesday, far exceeding the 182,684 votes by the same point during the 2018 midterm primary elections.

The numbers have even overwhelmed those of the 2020 presidential election by 156 percent, despite election officials at the time promoting early and mail-in voting to decrease crowd size during the Coronavirus pandemic.

Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger said Wednesday, “The record early voting turnout is a testament to the security of the voting system and the hard work of our county election officials. As Secretary of State, I promised to strike a strong balance between access and security in our elections. These numbers demonstrate that I kept that promise and that voters have confidence in Georgia’s elections.”

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During debate on the bill, Republicans claimed that the Election Integrity Act of 2021 would secure future elections in the state while making it easier to vote.

The bill executed an ID requirement for absentee ballot requests and mandated three weeks of early voting, including availability on weekends.

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President Joe Biden said when the bill was passed, “At a time when parts of our country are backsliding. The days of Jim Crow passing laws harken back to the era of poll taxes when Black people were made to guess how many beans — how many jellybeans in a jar, or count the number of bubbles in a bar of soap before they could cast their ballot.”

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Major League Baseball moved the 2021 All-Star Game from Atlanta in response to the law, asserting that the legislation restricted access to voting.

MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred said in a statement, “I have decided that the best way to demonstrate our values as a sport is by relocating this year’s All-Star Game and MLB Draft. Major League Baseball fundamentally supports voting rights for all Americans and opposes restrictions to the ballot box. Fair access to voting continues to have our game’s unwavering support.”

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Former Georgia Democratic gubernatorial Stacy Abrams, who still has not admitted her loss in the 2018 race, said at the time she was “proud” of the league’s stance “on voting rights,” despite the businesses in Atlanta and their employees losing out on close to $90 million in revenue generated by the game.

She posted on Twitter, “Disappointed @MLB will move the All-Star Game, but proud of their stance on voting rights. GA GOP traded economic opportunity for suppression.”

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