Controversy surrounds new Georgia voting law
The new Georgia voting law does a number of things – including shrinking the window to request mail-in ballots and enacting new voter ID requirements.
While Democrats have slammed the bill as restricting ballot access to minority communities, Republicans have insisted that the bill expands access.
Georgia State Representative Mike Cameron defended the law, saying that input from his constituents was heavily considered during the bill’s formation.
“The truth of it is, we had tens of hours of hearings, public hearings, we had input from people – I took input back from my people in my district to Atlanta, to the committee. The committee had like open hearings and anybody who’s able to contribute. So it’s just, they’re ranting and raving saying that we’re not being fair but this is more fair than a lot of other states,” says Rep. Cameron.
Tennessee State Representative Yusuf Hakeem took a different position, saying that Tennessee has adopted similarly restrictive voting laws that are based off of allegations of voter fraud, something that he says is unfounded.
“If you look at some other states, they vote by mail entirely. But for some reason there’s a belief in the state of Tennessee that there’s all this voter fraud, but it has not been bared out by the facts. So what I’m getting at is that again, it’s the big lie that is pushing these types of concepts,” Rep. Hakeem says.
UTC political science professor Jeremy Strickler says that it’s highlighted an intensifying debate between Republicans and Democrats on election integrity.
“Because there is a vast number of people who think American democracy is not working, we unfortunately cannot come to terms on what the problem is. So it’s a debate between, is the problem not enough people can vote, or that the wrong people might be voting?” asks Strickler.
The MLB has since announced that it would moving its All-Star game out of Atlanta in protest of the law.