Do you support the enactment of Georgia’s Election Integrity Act of 2021 (S.B. 202)? Why or why not? What other policies related to voting would you support?
I opposed S.B. 202, Brian Kemp’s 2021 anti-voter legislation. It was fueled by disinformation, rushed through committee and signed by him behind closed doors to avoid public scrutiny. This bill, he admitted in May, was introduced in response to frustration about the result of the 2020 election, and makes it harder for Black, brown, elderly, disabled, and young voters to cast their ballots. This bill represented a solution in search of a problem, and imposed cruel and unnecessary restrictions on voting. It drastically changed the vote by mail process that Black voters relied on in 2020 by shortening the vote by mail request period and reducing drop boxes in heavily democratic counties. It makes it a crime to hand out food and water to voters standing in line when we know voters of color are more likely to experience longer wait times than white voters. It granted an unelected State Election Board power to replace local election officials that have significant responsibilities over voter access and election certification. SB 202 also allows a single elector to challenge an unlimited number of voters. Tens of thousands have been challenged this year, burdening elections officials at their busiest time of year.
As governor, I will protect and expand the freedom to vote. I will provide consistency for voters across all 159 counties, and ensure that counties have the training, resources and flexibility needed to serve their voters and work with the Secretary of State to do so. I will make voting more accessible by mandating a fair allocation of polling places and polling place resources during early voting and on Election Day, and ensuring that polling locations are stable, convenient and equitable to voters. We will invest in mobile voting precincts to assist seniors, disabled Georgians and Georgians voting in areas with long wait times. Voters should not have to pay for postage for mail ballots, and their votes should count if they’re in the correct county on Election Day, as they do in Early Voting. Lastly, I will veto maps with gerrymandered districts, whether state legislative or Congressional and will advocate to end the practice of state interference and restore local control in local elections.