10th Legislative Day: Georgia Senators Introduce Nine Restrictive Election Bills

ATLANTA – On the calendar for Tuesday, Feb 2: Senate Proposed First Readers list that includes nine bills introduced by Senators Tippins (37th), Walker III (20th) and Mullins (53rd) – all efforts focused on restricting Georgians’ access to the ballot box.

As we continue to navigate life in the middle of a global pandemic, Georgia senators are working under the gold dome to repeal no-excuse vote-by-mail (SB 71), prevent 3rd-party groups from circulating applications for absentee ballots (SB 72) and to require a photocopy of voter IDs be submitted with a vote-by-mail application (SB 67). They even want to restrict automatic voter registration at the DMV (SB 69).

Here is the full list of bills on today’s First Reader list:

SB 62. By Senators Tippins of the 37th, Ginn of the 47th, Miller of the 49th, Gooch of the 51st, Albers of the 56th and others: A BILL to be entitled an Act to amend Chapter 2 of Title 21 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to elections and primaries generally, so as to provide that the name and designation of the precinct appears on every ballot; to provide for the use of holographic security devices on ballots; to provide for the storage and retention of absentee ballots by precinct with chain of custody; to provide for the manner of handling and processing ballots requiring duplication for processing; to provide for the maintenance of certain lists of absentee voters; to provide for related matters; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.

SB 67. By Senators Walker III of the 20th, Miller of the 49th, Mullis of the 53rd, Kennedy of the 18th, Gooch of the 51st and others: A BILL to be entitled an Act to amend Chapter 2 of Title 21 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to elections and primaries generally, so as to provide for the submission of identification in connection with absentee ballot applications; to provide for the submission of photocopies of voter identification documents for absentee ballot applications; to provide for requesting of absentee ballot applications through a web portal; to provide for related matters; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes. 

SB 68. By Senators Mullis of the 53rd, Miller of the 49th, Gooch of the 51st, Walker III of the 20th, Albers of the 56th and others: A BILL to be entitled an Act to amend Chapter 2 of Title 21 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to elections and primaries generally, so as to revise the manner of delivery of voted absentee ballots; to provide for related matters; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.

SB 69. By Senators Mullis of the 53rd, Miller of the 49th, Gooch of the 51st, Walker III of the 20th, Hickman of the 4th and others: A BILL to be entitled an Act to amend Chapter 2 of Title 21 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to primaries and elections generally, so as to provide that persons desiring to register to vote or update their voter registration through an application for a driver’s license or identification card shall be required to affirmatively indicate such desire on such application; to provide for related matters; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.

SB 70. By Senators Mullis of the 53rd, Miller of the 49th, Gooch of the 51st, Walker III of the 20th, Albers of the 56th and others: A BILL to be entitled an Act to amend Chapter 2 of Title 21 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to elections and primaries generally, so as to provide that a person who votes in a general election for the office of United States Representative or United States Senator in another state and subsequently moves to this state shall be ineligible to vote in a runoff for any such offices in this state in the same election cycle; to provide for related matters; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes. 

SB 71. By Senators Mullis of the 53rd, Miller of the 49th, Hickman of the 4th, McNeill of the 3rd, Beach of the 21st and others: A BILL to be entitled an Act to amend Chapter 2 of Title 21 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to elections and primaries generally, so as to revise the definition of “absentee elector”; to provide for reasons for voting by absentee ballot; to provide for certain exceptions; to provide for related matters; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.

SB 72. By Senators Mullis of the 53rd, Miller of the 49th, Gooch of the 51st, Albers of the 56th, Hickman of the 4th and others: A BILL to be entitled an Act to amend Chapter 2 of Title 21 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to elections and primaries generally, so as to provide that county registrars shall obtain monthly from the coroner, judge of the probate court, and funeral homes in the county identifying information about persons who died in the county during the previous month; to provide for related matters; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.

SB 73. By Senators Mullis of the 53rd, Miller of the 49th, Gooch of the 51st, Walker III of the 20th, Albers of the 56th and others: A BILL to be entitled an Act to amend Chapter 2 of Title 21 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to elections and primaries generally, so as to limit the distribution of absentee ballot applications to certain election officials and candidates; to provide for certain disclosures; to provide for related matters; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.

SB 74. By Senators Mullis of the 53rd, Miller of the 49th, Gooch of the 51st, Walker III of the 20th, Albers of the 56th and others: A BILL to be entitled an Act to amend Chapter 2 of Title 21 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to elections and primaries generally, so as to revise the ability of poll watchers at tabulating centers to observe the vote counting process; to provide for related matters; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes. 

These nine bills come behind five other voting-restriction bills that have already been introduced in the House and Senate – bringing the total to 14 in the first 10 days of session.

  • SB 29 Requiring 2 copies of photo ID to vote absentee
  • HB 62 Prohibiting boards of elections, boards of elections and registration, local election superintendents, and county boards of registrars from accepting or expending private funds
  • HB 162 Revising provisions for the appointment, terms, and filling of vacancies of board members in Morgan County
  • HB 136 Giving probate judges power to appoint acting election superintendents in the event of a vacancy
  • HR 64 A change to the state constitution clarifying that only citizens of the United States who are residents of Georgia have a right to vote in elections in this state

Several representatives indicated they would seek these changes during the House Governmental Affairs Meetings back in December. Despite the rejection of conspiracy theories around election fraud by the Office of the Secretary of State and the GBI, Georgia legislators are choosing to perpetuate the claims by introducing “responsive” legislation to debunked rumors.

Let your state rep know that you are informed and watching and that you expect them to fight to keep Georgia elections free and fair to ALL who choose to participate.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s