Nearly five dozen House Republicans on Monday threw their weight behind a controversial Georgia election law, urging a federal judge to dismiss a legal challenge brought by the Department of Justice (DOJ).
In an amicus brief, 57 GOP lawmakers argued that Georgia’s new Republican-crafted voting restrictions comply with federal voting protections and promote the state’s interest in election integrity.
“Non-discriminatory state laws that are designed to protect election integrity do not infringe upon the right to vote,” they told an Atlanta-based federal judge. “To the contrary, ‘the right to vote is the right to participate in an electoral process that is necessarily structured to maintain the integrity of the democratic system.’ ”
The Georgia law at issue, S.B. 202, which passed in March along party lines, imposes restrictions that voting rights groups say will fall most heavily on minorities. It sets new voter ID requirements for absentee ballots, limits drop boxes and prohibits passing out food and water to those waiting in line to vote.
The measure was immediately hit with legal challenges by voting rights groups. In June, the DOJ filed suit, alleging that certain provisions of the law intentionally aim to make it harder for Black residents to vote, in violation of the Voting Rights Act of 1965.
Georgia’s law is among an array of similar measures being considered by state legislatures across the country after former President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump takes shot at new GOP candidate in Ohio over Cleveland nickname GOP political operatives indicted over illegal campaign contribution from Russian national in 2016 On The Money — Dems dare GOP to vote for shutdown, default MORE lied repeatedly about the 2020 presidential election being stolen through widespread voter fraud, a claim that is not supported by evidence.
Three independent counts, including a hand recount, of Georgia’s roughly 5 million ballots were conducted after the 2020 election, all of which confirmed President BidenJoe BidenHouse clears bill to provide veterans with cost-of-living adjustment On The Money — Dems dare GOP to vote for shutdown, default To reduce poverty, stop burdening the poor: What Joe Manchin gets wrong about the child tax credit MORE’s win there.
Among the lawmakers who signed onto Monday’s amicus brief, which is pending the court’s approval, were promoters of Trump’s falsehoods about the election. They include Rep. Elise StefanikElise Marie StefanikWyoming county GOP rejects effort to rescind Cheney's party status Stefanik in ad says Democrats want 'permanent election insurrection' GOP leader taking proxy voting fight to Supreme Court MORE (N.Y.), the chair of the House Republican Conference, Rep. Paul GosarPaul Anthony GosarDomestic extremists return to the Capitol Republicans keep distance from 'Justice for J6' rally Washington ramps up security ahead of Sept. 18 rally MORE (R-Ariz.) and Rep. Jody HiceJody Brownlow Hice'Justice for J6' rally puts GOP in awkward spot Republicans keep distance from 'Justice for J6' rally Watchdog group seeks ethics probe over McCarthy's Jan. 6 comments MORE (R-Ga.), a 2022 candidate for Georgia secretary of state, the state’s top election post.
The lawmakers' brief argues that the Constitution gives state legislatures far more authority than that of Congress or courts to set state election procedures. Their court filing comes after the defendants in the case, which includes the state of Georgia and Republican National Committee, urged the judge last week to toss the lawsuit.
The House members' amicus brief was filed by attorney Jay SekulowJay Alan SekulowGOP political operatives indicted over illegal campaign contribution from Russian national in 2016 57 House Republicans back Georgia against DOJ voting rights lawsuit The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by TikTok - New video of riot unnerves many senators MORE, who represented Trump at his first of two impeachment trials.