The Standard Journal

ACLU takes aim at absentee ballot provision in Georgia’s new election law

- By Dave Williams

ATLANTA — A civil rights group last week criticized Georgia’s new absentee ballot form as an invasion of privacy.

Secretary of State Brad Raffensper­ger unveiled the new ballot on Tuesday, Aug. 3. Based on the controvers­ial election law overhaul the Republican­controlled General Assembly passed in March, it requires absentee voters to provide their driver’s license number or some other form of state ID.

“Georgia’s anti-voter law is requiring voters to provide sensitive personal informatio­n in an era where identity theft is easy,” said Rahul Garabadu, voting rights attorney of the ACLU of Georgia.

“Our lawsuit challenges these unnecessar­y and more burdensome ID requiremen­ts that will have the heaviest impact on voters of color and voters with disabiliti­es.”

The ACLU, other civil rights and voting rights groups and the Biden administra­tion’s Justice Department have sued to overturn the new law, which took effect July 1.

Among other things, the legislatio­n replaces the signature-match verificati­on process for absentee ballots with the ID requiremen­t, restricts the location of ballot drop boxes and prohibits non-poll workers from handing out food and drinks within 150 feet of voters standing in line.

Raffensper­ger has defended requiring absentee voters to provide a driver’s license number as an objective form of identity verificati­on compared with signature matches, which have long drawn complaints from Democrats and Republican­s as requiring subjective judgment.

The law’s opponents say it amounts to politicall­y motivated voter suppressio­n, with requiremen­ts that will disproport­ionately affect low-income and minority voters.

Supporters say it’s a voting integrity measure aimed at restoring public trust in the electoral process.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from United States