absentee voting

Legal challenges filed hours after Kemp signs controversial election bill

Legal challenges filed hours after Kemp signs controversial election bill

Republican Gov. Brian Kemp signed off on an overhaul of Georgia’s new voting laws that limit absentee voting Thursday with partisan support and an acknowledgement that courts will decide if new restrictions are legal. Following weeks of embittered debate and protests, Georgia Republicans hours earlier passed the expansive Senate Bill 202, coined the “Election Integrity Act 2021,” a plan they say will restore confidence in a broken election system. After signing the bill into law, Kemp referenced litigation that he anticipates is forthcoming over changes to early and absentee voting and a slew of other election laws. A lawsuit was quickly filed…
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Big changes made to Georgia’s election reform bills

Big changes made to Georgia’s election reform bills

Republican state lawmakers hammering out changes to Georgia’s election system have dropped controversial proposals to scrap Sunday polling hours and no-excuse mail-in voting amid pushback from Democratic leaders and voting-rights advocates. With the General Assembly set to adjourn the 2021 session next week, two omnibus bills moving through the House and Senate include dozens of proposed election changes that continue to irk opponents, especially tighter voter ID rules for casting absentee ballots and a ban on giving out water or food to voters waiting in line outside polling places. But the move to repeal no-excuse absentee voting and shrink weekend hours…
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Georgia senate passes major voting reform bill

Georgia senate passes major voting reform bill

A major overhaul of Georgia’s absentee voting system and other election changes brought by Republican lawmakers passed in the state Senate Monday by a party-line vote, sparking cries of voter suppression from Democratic leaders. The wide-ranging bill, sponsored by Senate Majority Leader Mike Dugan, R-Carrollton, was one of 12 measures focused on election changes up for debate on the Senate floor Monday, marking a swell of proposals to change voting procedures after the 2020 election cycle. Dugan’s bill contains some of the most sweeping and controversial election changes pitched so far in the legislative session, including provisions to require a…
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Georgia’s top Republican wants state ID cards to be free

Georgia’s top Republican wants state ID cards to be free

As Republican lawmakers in Georgia work to pass voting reforms, including requiring photo identification in order to vote absentee, the Speaker of the Georgia House of Representatives wants to make the identification cards free. Today, David Ralston proposed that State ID cards through the Georgia Department of Driver Services be free to all eligible Georgians. Currently, the state assesses a $32 fee for State ID cards. Similar in form to driver’s licenses, State ID cards are compliant with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s REAL ID standard and may be used for voter identification among other purposes. Georgia already offers…
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Gwinnett County plans to sue Georgia if voting changes become law

Gwinnett County plans to sue Georgia if voting changes become law

The Gist: As lawmakers debate a bill that makes sweeping changes to voting in Georgia, the Gwinnett County Solicitor General warns he is prepared to sue the state if the bill becomes law. The Bill: The bill in question is House Bill 531. Among other changes, it restricts absentee ballot drop boxes, ends voting on Sundays and shortens the amount of time voters are allowed to request absentee ballots. You'll frequently hear this bill called HB 531, the omnibus voting bill, or more broadly as proposed changes to voting in Georgia. The Solicitor General: Gwinnett County Solicitor General Brian Whiteside,…
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Georgia Republicans want to shorten the time you have to request an absentee ballot

Georgia Republicans want to shorten the time you have to request an absentee ballot

A new state legislative committee focused on election changes passed a bill Thursday that will keep Georgia voters from requesting absentee ballots the week before Election Day. House Bill 270 would set a deadline of at least 10 days before Election Day for election workers to issue absentee ballots instead of the Friday before as allowed now. It is the first bill to advance through the House Special Committee on Election Integrity, created after Georgia’s  contentious 2020 presidential election.  Members of the committee voted along party lines, with the Republican outvoting Democrats, who voiced concerns about residents having a shorter…
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Here’s how bills proposed by Republicans could change voting in Georgia

Here’s how bills proposed by Republicans could change voting in Georgia

Republican state senators have rolled out a legislative package aimed at overhauling Georgia’s election laws by limiting who can vote by mail, outlining how to prove identification and outlawing absentee-ballot drop boxes. The eight bills, filed late Monday by top Senate Republican leaders, mark the most sweeping attempt to change local voting laws after the 2020 election cycle stirred mistrust among many conservative Georgians over the state’s election integrity. The bills especially target absentee voting in Georgia after all three major elections in the 2020 cycle saw more than 1 million mail-in ballots cast amid the COVID-19 pandemic, helping Democrats carry Georgia…
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