House Democrats review Georgia’s voting law in light of new state rules
(GA Recorder) | WASHINGTON – Members of a US House panel debated on Monday whether certain state election laws deprived some voters, including people of color, of their findings.
The chairman of the House Administration Committee’s Elections subcommittee, Rep. GK Butterfield (DN.C.), raised concerns about recent voter identification requirements in state laws such as Georgia and Texas, as well as those that have been adopted. its original condition.
Butterfield said the laws had the effect of making voting much more difficult for some people, including rural residents and minority groups.
Butterfield added that the 1965 Voting Rights Act prevented states from enacting voting laws that could harm voters of color, and he said Congress must restore those protections.
“The voter identification laws of Texas and North Carolina illustrate the critical role that the Voting Rights Act has played in protecting the rights of minority voters and illustrate the need for Congress, for us , to enact legislation to revitalize the federal protection of minority voting rights, ”he said.
Nazita Lajevard, assistant professor of political science at Michigan State University, said her research focused on how voter identification laws affect minority voters.
“Overall, my colleagues and I have found that these laws impose a disproportionate burden on minority voters; our research has consistently found a negative and significant empirical link between voter identification laws and minority turnout in the United States, ”she said in her opening statement.
Matthew Campbell, an attorney for the Native American Rights Fund in Boulder, Colorado, said voter identification requirements also erected voting barriers for Native Americans.
“Due to continued discrimination and government neglect, many Native Americans live in overcrowded homes that have no address, do not receive mail, and are located on dirt roads that become impassable due to inclement weather, ”he said.
Campbell added that many tribal ID cards are not automatically accepted as appropriate documents for voter registration “despite the unreasonable difficulty for Native Americans and Alaska Natives to obtain an ID card. State”.
But front-row member of the panel, Rep. Bryan Steil (R-Wis.), Argued that most Americans need ID to purchase alcohol or pass through security. airport. A driver’s license is not required to fly within U.S. borders, but a traveler will need to go through additional identity and security checks at the TSA security checkpoint.
He asked one of the witnesses, Lori Roman, president of the American Constitutional Rights Union in Florida, whether the voter identification laws had any discriminatory intent. The ACRU was founded as a conservative alternative to the American Civil Liberties Union and describes itself as focused on protecting constitutional civil rights and promoting electoral integrity.
“No, if asked as you indicated,” she said, referring to how her condition requires voter ID and how ID is required to buy alcohol.
Steil said Republicans “want to make sure that every eligible person who wants to vote gets to vote.”
“The far left has worked overtime to twist the new electoral laws in the United States,” he said in his opening speech. “The left-wing characterization of election laws like the one recently passed in Georgia and other states has several ‘pinocchios’ and ‘pants on the fires’ when evaluated by fact-checkers.
PolitiFact, which distributes the “Pants on Fire” label for inaccurate claims, has not made any rating related to the new Georgian law. The Washington Post fact-checker, who gives Pinocchios for false statements, gave one to President Joe Biden, who falsely said Georgia’s new law ended voting hours earlier.
Butterfield, the president, said the panel will continue to examine how voter identification laws affect communities of color as Democrats work to advance their elections and campaign finance reform agenda, HR 1 .
This bill has passed the House and now awaits action in the Senate, where it is unclear how Democrats will win enough votes to send it to Biden’s office.