Saturday, October 15, 2016 - Jim Barksdale for Senate congratulates the Georgia NAACP, Georgia Coalition for the Peoples’ Agenda, New Georgia Project, and Lawyers’ Committee on their victory to extend voter registration in Chatham County through October 18th. This community, which was hit hard by Hurricane Matthew, saw its voter registration offices closed for the final six days prior to voter registration day.
Despite this obvious hardship and the exceptional circumstances, Republican Secretary of State Brian Kemp was indifferent to this community’s emergency, seeing an opportunity to suppress turnout in a Democratic-leaning county for the upcoming election. In an announcement that was beyond parody, he encouraged those impacted by Hurricane Matthew to register online, despite the fact that many homes lost power and the website had erroneously rejected voter registrations over three days earlier only a week prior.
While it’s hard to believe Americans need to fight against their government for the simple right to register to vote in 2016, Georgia Republicans like Brian Kemp have an established history of denying access to the ballot, particularly in minority communities. We call on the Secretary of State to extend the voter registration deadline to October 18 for all six counties under evacuation order from Governor Deal, including Bryan, Liberty, Glynn, Camden and McIntosh.