Dec 26, 2020 - Politics & Policy

State Republicans seek to rein in voting reforms after Biden's victory

Trump supporters outside of the Georgia State Capitol Building in Atlanta in Nov. 2020.

Trump supporters outside of the Georgia State Capitol Building in Atlanta in November 2020. Photo: Rich von Biberstein/Icon Sportswire

Republican lawmakers in key states that President-elect Biden won have vowed to crack down on voting reforms implemented amid the coronavirus pandemic that made it easier for Americans to vote, according to AP.

Why it matters: The popular reforms contributed to this year's record turnout and did not produce widespread fraud as claimed by President Trump and his supporters, according to the Department of Justice.

Context: Attorney General Bill Barr told AP in early December that the department did not uncover evidence of widespread voter fraud that would change the outcome of the 2020 presidential election.

The big picture:

  • Georgia: Republicans in Georgia, which Biden narrowly won, have proposed requiring a photo ID when voting absentee, a ban on drop boxes and requiring an excuse for mail voting.
    • Georgia's two U.S. Senate runoffs in January will take place under current law.
  • Pennsylvania: Republicans, who hold a majority in both Pennsylvania legislative chambers, are discussing changing a law that extends mail voting to all registered voters by instead requiring an excuse to receive a ballot in the mail.
  • Michigan: Republican legislators held a hearing where lawyers for Trump baselessly alleged widespread voting irregularities, and the Democratic secretary of state warned that could precipitate new voting rules.

Of note: Some Republican-held states are instead attempting to make it easier for Americans to vote.

  • In Ohio, Republican Secretary of State Frank LaRose told AP that he hopes to expand early voting locations and add an online option for requesting absentee ballots.

Go deeper: Georgia's early voting for Senate seats starts with heavy turnout

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