2020 was arguably one of the most important election years of our lifetime. In the midst of a pandemic, we saw more digital organizing and grassroots movements than ever before. With President Biden now at the helm of US politics, we’re wondering: what is up with all of these voter suppression bills coming out?
According to a recent report from the Brennan Center for Justice, state lawmakers have begun introducing bills to restrict voting provisions. Some of the most restrictive bills being introduced are taking place in states like Georgia, a key state in delivering President Biden as well as Democratic Senator Raphael Warnock and progressive favorite Jon Ossoff. A big reason for Georgia’s voter suppression bill that was signed into law by Governor Brian Kemp (the winner of the 2018 Georgia gubernatorial race against popular Stacey Abrams, another election not without its own version of voter suppression). Civil rights activists are now organizing themselves for a fight against this bill, and it isn’t ending anytime soon.
361 bills taking aim at restricting voter participation have been introduced as of March 24th, affecting a total of 47 states. The reasoning behind these laws? Preventing voter fraud that occurred in our 2020 election cycle. Despite no evidence supporting these claims, conservative commentators and elected officials are determined to push through these bills that aim to directly affect the right to vote.
After a wild election year in 2020, it isn’t uncommon knowledge that the organizing of Indigenous, Black, Latinx, and younger communities are ultimately what delivered President Biden the White House. Without key wins in states like Arizona and Georgia, President Biden would not have been able to defeat Donald Trump for the presidency he holds now.
Along with voter suppression bills, there are a number of bills being introduced also taking aim at the Black Lives Matter organizing and protests. With the newly signed HB 1 Bill (also known as the “anti riot” bill) in Florida recently signed by Governor Ron DeSantis, a flurry of harsh restrictions on organizing is taking place. Only time will tell if other states will follow in its wake.
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