Hollywood stars, business leaders sign open letter opposing new voting restrictions
© Getty Images

A virtual who's who of Hollywood — including George Clooney, Queen Latifah, Kerry Washington, Katy Perry, Leonardo DiCaprio and Samuel L. Jackson — are adding their names to an open letter condemning voting restrictions, published following the signing of a controversial elections law in Georgia.

The letter published Wednesday appeared in The Washington Post, The New York Times and other papers as an ad sprawled across two full pages.

"We stand for democracy," the message said in bold letters.

ADVERTISEMENT

"As Americans, we know that in our democracy we should not expect to agree on everything," the letter stated. "However, regardless of our political affiliations, we believe the very foundation of our electoral process rests upon the ability of each of us to cast our ballots for the candidates of our choice."

"We all should feel a responsibility to defend the right to vote and to oppose any discriminatory legislation or measures that restrict or prevent any eligible voter from having an equal and fair opportunity to cast a ballot," the letter said.

"Voting is the lifeblood of our democracy and we call upon all Americans to join us in taking a nonpartisan stand for this most basic and fundamental right of all Americans," it continued.

The letter was also signed by hundreds of major corporations and top executives, including Target, Google, Amazon and Berkshire Hathaway CEO Warren Buffett.

Among the performers and entertainment industry figures who signed the letter were: Sacha Baron Cohen, Orlando Bloom, J.J. Abrams, Paula Abdul, Naomi Campbell, Lee Daniels, Larry David, Josh Gad, Ariana Grande, Ed Helms, Kate Hudson, Earvin "Magic" Johnson, Norman Lear, Demi Lovato, George Lucas, Rooney Mara, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Rita Moreno, Gwyneth Paltrow, Joaquin Phoenix, Shonda Rhimes, Tracee Ellis Ross, Mark Ruffalo and Amy SchumerAmy Beth SchumerOvernight Energy: 'Eye of fire,' Exxon lobbyist's comments fuel renewed attacks on oil industry | Celebrities push Biden to oppose controversial Minnesota pipeline | More than 75 companies ask Congress to pass clean electricity standard Celebrities push Biden to oppose controversial Minnesota pipeline Hollywood goes all in for the For the People Act MORE.

ADVERTISEMENT

The high-profile letter comes after Georgia Gov. Brian KempBrian KempOn The Money: Senate braces for nasty debt ceiling fight | Democrats pushing for changes to bipartisan deal | Housing prices hit new high in June Businesses contribute thousands to backers of Georgia election law after condemning it Conservative group to defend Georgia election law in All-Star Game ads MORE (R) signed Republican-backed legislation last month that includes more identification requirements for absentee voters, limits drop boxes and seeks to bar anyone other than poll workers from giving food or water to Georgians waiting in line to cast their ballots.

Democrats and voting rights advocates have argued that the law amounts to minority voter suppression.

Earlier this week, Will Smith announced that he and Antoine Fuqua, the director of his upcoming project, "Emancipation," would move production of the film out of Georgia in protest of the new law.

"We cannot in good conscience provide economic support to a government that enacts regressive voting laws that are designed to restrict voter access," Smith and Fuqua said in a joint statement.

Multiple other GOP-led states, including Texas, have advanced or are considering new voting reforms after the 2020 election.