cloudyn.png
Wednesday August 4th, 2021 3:38AM

New lawsuit challenges Georgia's GOP-backed election law

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

ATLANTA (AP) — A group of civil rights and advocacy organizations including the Georgia NAACP have filed a lawsuit in federal court challenging Georgia’s new Republican-backed election law, which includes new restrictions on mail voting and gives the state legislature more control over the administration of elections.

The lawsuit, filed Sunday against Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger and other members of the State Election Board, asks a judge to find that the law violates the U.S. Constitution and the Voting Rights Act and to block state officials from enforcing it. The suit was filed a day before a Democratic lawmaker returned to the state Capitol after being arrested while protesting the law.

The complaint argues that Republican “officials have resorted to attempting to suppress the vote of Black voters and other voters of color in order to maintain the tenuous hold that the Republican Party has in Georgia.”

“In other words, these officials are using racial discrimination as a means of achieving a partisan end,” it says.

The change to Georgia’s election law comes after Democrats won the presidential contest and two U.S. Senate runoffs in the once reliably red state.

The complaint was filed by the Georgia NAACP, Georgia Coalition for the People’s Agenda, League of Women Voters of Georgia, GALEO Latino Community Development Fund, Common Cause and the Lower Muskogee Creek Tribe.

The new election law was signed Thursday by Republican Gov. Brian Kemp, just hours after it cleared the state legislature. It is part of a tide of GOP-sponsored election bills introduced in states across the country after former President Donald Trump made false claims that fraud contributed to his election loss in November.

The Georgia law adds a photo ID requirement for voting absentee by mail, cuts the amount of time people have to request an absentee ballot and limits where drop boxes can be placed and when they can be accessed. It also bans people from handing out food or water to voters waiting in line and allows the Republican-controlled State Election Board to remove and replace county election officials.

Republicans in Georgia argue that the law is needed to restore voters’ confidence and that it actually expands voting access.

“Georgia’s Election Integrity Act that I signed into law expands early voting and secures our vote-by-mail system to protect the integrity of our elections,” Kemp said in a recent tweet. “The Peach State is leading the nation in making it easy to vote and hard to cheat.”

The federal suit brought by the NAACP and others is the second to challenge the law. The New Georgia Project, Black Voters Matter and Rise Inc. filed a lawsuit late Thursday seeking to block the law on similar grounds.

Sen. David Lucas, a Macon Democrat, said Republicans shouldn’t be surprised that two lawsuits have already been filed.

“I told you we’re gonna fight,” Lucas said in a speech on the Senate floor Monday. “You did it, you voted for it, and now you’ve got to live with it. ... We’re going to spend the whole next year in the courthouse.”

The children of some of the nation’s most notable civil rights leaders joined critics of the law, writing an open letter that says “legislators are attempting to transport us back to the shameful period of American history when mass voter suppression for communities of color was the law of the land.”

The letter was written by Bernice A. King, the daughter of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.; Al Vivian, the son of the Rev. C.T. Vivian; and John-Miles Lewis, the son of U.S. Rep. John Lewis.

“Far too many of our lawmakers failed to take a stand and corporations did not go far enough to ensure every voting citizen had fair and equitable access to the most basic of American rights,” the letter says.

Also Monday, the Democratic lawmaker who was arrested after protesting the law Thursday returned to the state Capitol.

A group of black-clad supporters surrounded state Rep. Park Cannon, an Atlanta Democrat, some wearing “Stand with Park” T-shirts. Cannon was arrested and charged with two felonies after she knocked on the door to Kemp’s office while he was on live television speaking about the voting bill he had just signed.

After Cannon walked with Martin Luther King III during a march around the Capitol, supporters with raised fists formed an aisle for Cannon to walk through to the House chamber. Cannon didn’t respond to questions from reporters as she walked into the chamber.

Others, though, were talking about Cannon’s situation. Democratic Sen. Nan Orrock mocked the “onerous sin” for which Cannon was arrested.

“I’m here today to stand for Park Cannon, to stand for state Rep. Park Cannon and deplore the treatment she received at the hands of state troopers,” Orrock said.

Republicans, meanwhile, said Cannon was grandstanding. Republican Sen. Randy Robertson said Cannon had ignored “nine warnings” and lawmakers needed to stand behind the police and state troopers who guard the Capitol.

“This is all publicity,” Robertson said.

  • Associated Categories: Homepage, Local/State News, Associated Press (AP), AP Online Headlines - Washington, AP Online Congress News, AP Online - Georgia News, AP Online Headlines - Georgia News
© Copyright 2021 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
AP sources: SolarWinds hack got emails of top DHS officials
U.S. officials discovered last December that federal agencies had fallen victim to a cyberespionage effort pulled off largely through a hack of SolarWinds software
12:46PM ( 7 minutes ago )
Former officer's trial in George Floyd's death gets underway
Prosecutors at the trial of Derek Chauvin played a video showing white former Minneapolis police officer kneeling on George Floyd’s neck for 9 minutes, 29 seconds as the Black man pleaded for his life and went limp
12:42PM ( 11 minutes ago )
CDC director has feeling of 'impending doom' amid new spike
CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky is making an impassioned plea to Americans not to let their guard down in the fight against COVID-19
12:37PM ( 16 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Ban on renter evictions during COVID-19 pandemic is extended
The Biden administration is extending a federal moratorium on evictions of tenants who've fallen behind on rent during the coronavirus pandemic
10:49AM ( 2 hours ago )
New York lawmakers agree to legalize recreational marijuana
New York lawmakers have finalized an agreement to legalize recreational marijuana sales to adults over the age of 21
7:34PM ( 17 hours ago )
Biden economic plan to focus 1st on infrastructure this week
President Joe Biden will lay out the first part of his multitrillion-dollar economic recovery package this week focusing on rebuilding roads, bridges and other infrastructure
3:52PM ( 21 hours ago )
AP Online Headlines - Washington
Vaccines haven't cured loneliness in New York nursing homes
High rates of COVID-19 throughout New York have left the majority of its nursing homes closed for most indoor visits despite relaxed guidance meant to help open them up for visitors
11:50PM ( 1 day ago )
Marijuana takes center stage in New Mexico special session
New Mexico lawmakers are embarking on an unusual legislative session that focuses on the legalization of recreational marijuana
8:38PM ( 1 day ago )
Big Tech's outsized influence draws state-level pushback
Big Tech’s outsized influence over so many aspects of everyday life has become one of the biggest battlefronts in state legislatures
10:30AM ( 2 days ago )
AP Online Congress News
ACC ends forgettable season with early NCAA Tournament exit
The Atlantic Coast Conference had a regular season that didn't live up to this league's lofty standards
12:00AM ( 12 hours ago )
Gordon scores 13 in Denver debut, a 126-102 win over Hawks
Aaron Gordon scored 13 points in his debut with Denver, and the Nuggets beat the Atlanta Hawks 126-102
11:32PM ( 13 hours ago )
South Carolina beats Georgia Tech 76-65 to reach Elite Eight
Zia Cooke scored 17 points to lead top-seed South Carolina to a 76-65 win over fifth-seeded Georgia Tech and reach the Elite Eight
11:03PM ( 13 hours ago )
AP Online - Georgia News
AP Online Headlines - Georgia News
AP sources: SolarWinds hack got emails of top DHS officials
U.S. officials discovered last December that federal agencies had fallen victim to a cyberespionage effort pulled off largely through a hack of SolarWinds software
12:46PM ( 7 minutes ago )
Former officer's trial in George Floyd's death gets underway
Prosecutors at the trial of Derek Chauvin played a video showing white former Minneapolis police officer kneeling on George Floyd’s neck for 9 minutes, 29 seconds as the Black man pleaded for his life and went limp
12:42PM ( 11 minutes ago )
CDC director has feeling of 'impending doom' amid new spike
CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky is making an impassioned plea to Americans not to let their guard down in the fight against COVID-19
12:37PM ( 16 minutes ago )
'Captain Underpants' spin-off pulled for 'passive racism'
A graphic novel for children that was a spin-off of the wildly popular “Captain Underpants” series is being pulled from library and book store shelves after its publisher said it “perpetuates passive racism.”
12:35PM ( 19 minutes ago )
Economist who pulled Albania out of 1997 anarchy dead at 58
Bashkim Fino, who was appointed to shepherd Albania out of almost total chaos when fraudulent investment schemes collapsed 24 years ago and angry crowds looted military installations nationwide, has died
12:31PM ( 23 minutes ago )