[guest post by Dana]
After Georgia’s Governor Kemp signed the state’s voting bill, President Biden came out the following day and wholly condemned it. Part of his criticism focused on his belief that it limited voting hours:
“What I’m worried about is how un-American this whole initiative is. It’s sick. It’s sick … deciding that you’re going to end voting at five o’clock when working people are just getting off work.”
— President Biden, in remarks at a news conference, March 25
“Among the outrageous parts of this new state law, it ends voting hours early so working people can’t cast their vote after their shift is over.”
— Biden, in a statement “on the attack on the right to vote in Georgia,” March 26
For his inaccurate claims, the Washington Post gave President Biden four Pinocchios:
On Election Day in Georgia, polling places are open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., and if you are in line by 7 p.m., you are allowed to cast your ballot. Nothing in the new law changes those rules.
However, the law did make some changes to early voting. But experts say the net effect was to expand the opportunities to vote for most Georgians, not limit them.
While the report notes that University of Georgia political scientist Charles S. Bullock III suggested that the President may have been referencing an earlier draft of the bill and not the final copy, it’s good to see accuracy taking priority over the obvious inaccuracy of the President’s claims.
Anyway, while the Georgia law contains the outrageous ban on water being provided to voters in a state where lines extended up to 10 hours last year, it now looks like Florida Republicans will follow suit and also make it illegal to provide water to voters waiting in line:
Florida Republicans are considering a bill that would effectively make it a crime to give voters food or drink, including water, within 150 feet of polling places.
According to the text of an elections bill introduced last week, state law currently prohibits offering voters assistance within 100 feet of polling locations; H.B. 7041 proposes expanding that zone to 150 feet and includes a prohibition on giving “any item” to voters or “interacting or attempting to interact” with voters within that zone.
State Rep. Blaise Ingoglia, a Republican from Spring Hill, said in a committee meeting last Monday that the ban would include “food or beverages.”
Is there no end to the pernicious influence of Trump’s “stolen election” lies on the GOP:
“Congratulations to Georgia and the Georgia state legislature on changing their voter rules and regulations,” Trump said in a statement through his Pac, Save America, which repeated his baseless allegation that fraud was a factor in his election loss to Biden. “They learned from the travesty of the 2020 presidential election, which can never be allowed to happen again. Too bad these changes could not have been done sooner!”