Almost two weeks ago, Georgia Governor Brian Kemp (R) signed into law sweeping election reform legislation known as SB 2020, and since his signature landed on the bill, the media and Democrats across the country have relied on spreading lies and misinformation to make their case for a federal takeover of state elections systems — more specifically setting the stage for HR1: the “For The People Act” which would dismantle our entire election process as we know it.
It’s no secret that we have needed election reform in this country and this fact alone became more clear after the 2020 Election. No matter how you expected the election to turn out in 2020, reform is needed, security is needed, and fair and equal access to the ballot box must be available to every American across the country.
Let’s review some of the lies about the new Georgia Election Law:
“It suppresses votes on a widespread level”
FACT: The bill actually preserves and even expands ballot access in numerous ways: it requires large precincts with typically long voting lines take steps to add more voting machines and election personnel to reduce wait times. It increases the total number of early voting days and actually increases the mandatory number of early weekend voting. It allows for permanent use of election drop boxes which wasn’t allowed prior to 2020 and contrary to popular belief, it still allows voters the opportunity to vote absentee without an excuse.
“Georgia Election law eliminates Sunday voting to suppress African-American votes”
FACT: Georgia law didn’t say a word about voting on Sunday’s prior to the introduction of SB 202, and in 2020, only 16 of 159 counties even offered early voting on Sunday’s. The new law explicitly provides the option of holding early voting on two Sundays for ALL localities. It quite literally increases the mandatory number of days for early weekend voting across the state.
“Including Voter ID in the Georgia Election law will suppress votes”
FACT: The law requires a driver’s license or state ID number, which 97% of registered voters already have. Anyone without a valid ID can easily obtain one, you guessed it, for FREE! The voter ID requirement replaces the state’s controversial signature match program that led to the disqualification of thousands of votes in 2020.
“The bill eliminates drop boxes for absentee voting”
FACT: If you voted in Georgia in 2019, drop boxes didn’t exist. The first time the state even used them was during the 2020 Election due to the COVID pandemic and this bill makes them an official part of Georgia elections moving forward. All 159 counties in Georgia will have drop boxes in the next election and they will each be under supervision and protected from tampering.
“The bill lets Republicans throw out votes they don’t agree with”
Read that one again and listen to how ridiculous it sounds.
FACT: The new law allows the bipartisan State Election Board to conduct performance reviews of local election supervisors who fail their area voters with things like long lines and unfulfilled absentee ballot requests. The board will not be able to unilaterally overturn election results but rather open a review process to ensure Election officials remain competent and in compliance with state laws and regulations.
“The bill bans water for voters waiting in line”
FACT: Countless other states have very specific laws against electioneering near poling places — Maryland is one of them! In Georgia, the new law codifies rules preventing political groups from handing out food and water to voters in line as an incentive to vote. Instead, the law specifically allows poll workers to make water available to anyone that wants it. The law has an overarching goal of cutting down wait times. Lower wait times = refreshments for people in line will be less necessary.
As a society we have become reliant on quick news and taking things at face value. Upon first glance at numerous opinions spread online about this bill, it looks like a horrible law that will result in widespread voter suppression but upon further investigation, you see that they are not only making voting easier, but they are also allowing for the expansion of voting in the State of Georgia.
It is my sincere hope that other states join in with common sense Election reform that allows more people to have fair and equal access to the ballot box moving forward.