Former President Jimmy Carter said in a letter on Tuesday that for years, Georgia has “established itself as a leader in providing voter access and taking steps to enhance election integrity.”
However, he said, state legislators are working to “turn back the clock” through bills that would restrict voting access.
Because of that, he said he’s “disheartened, saddened, and angry.”
He went on to say that he believes many of the proposed changes are “reactions to allegations of fraud for which no evidence was produced.”
“The proposed changes appear to be rooted in partisan interests, not the interests of all Georgia voters,” the former Democratic president said.
The GOP push comes after Georgia favored President Joe Biden in November, gave Democrats control of the Senate and cemented the state as a battleground.
To Democrats, the moves are nonsensical. Republicans, however, frame it only as reform.
The state Senate narrowly passed the bill that would end no-excuse absentee voting. The bill passed 29-20 on Monday. Senate Bill 241 would limit absentee voting to people 65 and older, those with a physical disability and people who will be out of town on Election Day. It would also require an ID for those who are able to vote absentee, among many other changes.
The bill is likely headed to a Senate-House conference committee where the chambers will hash out their difference on the issue.