Chairmen Seek Documents from Georgia Governor and Secretary of State on Reports of Voter Suppression
Washington, D.C. (Mar. 6, 2019)—Today, Rep. Elijah E. Cummings, the Chairman of the Committee on Oversight and Reform, and Rep. Jamie Raskin, the Chairman of the Subcommittee on Civil Rights and Civil Liberties, sent letters to Georgia Governor Brian Kemp and Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger requesting documents relating to reports of problems affecting the ability of people in Georgia to exercise their right to vote.
“The Committee on Oversight and Reform is investigating recent reports of serious problems with voter registration, voter access, and other matters affecting the ability of people in Georgia to exercise their right to vote,” the Chairmen wrote. “The Committee is particularly concerned by reports that Georgians faced unprecedented challenges with registering to vote and significant barriers to casting their votes during the 2018 election.”
In today’s letters, Cummings and Raskin explained that the Georgia Secretary of State’s Office cancelled voter registrations for more than 1.4 million Georgians while Governor Kemp served as Secretary of State, including 670,000 in 2017. In 2018, 53,000 Georgians who tried to register, most of them minorities, had their applications placed on hold by the Secretary of State’s Office.
The letters highlight additional voting issues affecting Georgians in recent years:
- County and state officials have closed more than 200 polling places across Georgia since 2012.
- Officials reportedly considered closing nearly all polling sites in one majority African American county, although they ultimately relented after public scrutiny.
- In other counties with significant minority populations, voters waited for hours to cast their ballots, even though hundreds of available voting machines sat unused in government warehouses.
- Reports have found an unusually high number of “undervotes” for Lieutenant Governor among African American voters in the 2018 general election.
Click here to read today’s letter to Governor Kemp.
Click here to read today’s letter to Secretary Raffensperger.