A Wave of Voter Suppression Bills in State Houses Imperils the Ballot Box

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ATLANTA, GA - MARCH 03: Demonstrators stand outside of the Georgia Capitol building, to oppose the HB 531 bill on March 3, 2021 in Atlanta, Georgia.HB 531 will add controversial voting restrictions to the state's upcoming elections including restricting ballot drop boxes, requiring an ID requirement for absentee voting and limiting weekend early voting days. The Georgia House passed the bill and will send it to the Senate. (Photo by Megan Varner/Getty Images) (Megan Varner)

Just two months after Georgia voters handed Democrats a majority in the U.S. Senate, state lawmakers there are proposing laws that would curtail weekend voting hours and impose ID requirements for absentee ballots, among other restrictions that critics say disproportionately affect Black voters. Attempts to restrict voting are not limited to Georgia. The Brennan Center for Justice reports that as of February 2021, lawmakers in 43 different states have introduced over 250 bills to restrict voting. Meanwhile in Congress, the House, with its Democratic majority, recently passed the “For the People Act,”a historic voter protection bill, that along with the “John Lewis Voting Rights Act," faces an uncertain future in the Senate. We’ll talk about why legislators are trying to make it harder to vote, and what is being done on the ground to combat these restrictive measures. 


Nsé Ufot, CEO, New Georgia Project, a nonpartisan organization that protects voter rights.

Dale Ho, director, ACLU Voting Rights Project

Eliza Sweren-Becker, counsel for the Voting Rights and Elections Program at the Brennan Center for Justice at NYU Law