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Georgia House passes GOP bill rolling back voting access

In the shadow of the Georgia State Capitol, the entire state is bracing for an election in which the outcome of two U.S. Senate runoff races will determine whether Democrats or Republicans will control the U.S. Senate.
Posted at 7:04 PM, Mar 01, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-01 19:04:33-05

Republican lawmakers in Georgia have muscled legislation through the state House that would roll back voting access.

It was passed over the objection of Democrats and civil rights groups gathered at the Capitol to protest. The bill comes after record turnout led to Democratic wins in Georgia’s presidential election and two U.S. Senate runoffs.

House Bill 531 passed 97-72 and now goes to the state Senate for more debate. The far-reaching bill would require a photo ID for absentee voting, limit the amount of time voters have to request an absentee ballot and limit early voting hours on weekends.

Georgia's branch of the ACLU has decried the bill.

"A quarter of a million. That’s how many Georgians voted on early voting days that HB 531 would cut," the Georgia ACLU wrote. "Almost 4 million. That’s the number of absentee ballots cast last year in Georgia – applications and ballots that would carry sensitive personal information if HB 531 were to pass."