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Photo: Raymond Boyd/Getty Images

Activists in Georgia are calling for a statewide boycott of Coca-Cola until the company speaks out against measures moving through the state legislature that would restrict voting access, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.

Driving the news: The massive Atlanta-based company said in a statement that it supports a "balanced approach to the elections bills that have been introduced in the Georgia Legislature this session," adding: "The ultimate goal should be fair, secure elections where access to voting is broad-based and inclusive."

  • But activists say the measures moving through Georgia's legislature are all but fair — and roll back expansions to voting access that disproportionately affect people of color.
  • The efforts by Georgia's GOP lawmakers come after the state swung blue for President Biden in 2020 and for Sens. Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff in 2021.

The big picture: The Coca-Cola boycott is part of a broader campaign to pressure Georgia's major businesses to speak out on voting rights.

  • "This past summer, Coke and other corporations said they needed to speak out against racism. But they’ve been mighty quiet about this," organizer Bishop Reginald Jackson told the AJC.
  • Jackson added that if “Coca-Cola wants Black and brown people to drink their product, then they must speak up when our rights, our lives and our very democracy as we know it is under attack.”

Go deeper

Washington state to restore voting rights for people on parole and probation

A ballot in a drive-up drop box in Renton, Washington state. Photo:y Jason Redmond/AFP via Getty Images)

Washington state's Senate on Wednesday night passed a bill to automatically restore voting rights for people who are on parole and probation.

Why it matters: The legislation, which will go to the desk of Gov. Jay Inslee (D) to be signed into law, essentially ensures that every Washington citizen who's not incarcerated can vote.

McConnell claims "states are not engaging in trying to suppress voters"

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) claimed during a hearing Wednesday that Democrats' signature voting rights bill, the "For the People Act," is unnecessary because "states are not engaging in trying to suppress voters whatsoever."

Reality check: Republican lawmakers across the country are trying to pass measures to make it more difficult to vote by limiting mail-in ballots, implementing new voter ID requirements and slashing registration options.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Virginia attorney general fires Jan. 6 investigator from university post

McIntire Amphitheater at the University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Virginia. Photo: Robert Knopes/UCG/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

The lead investigator for the Jan. 6 House select committee investigating the Capitol riot has been fired from his position as the University of Virginia's counsel by the state's new Republican attorney general, per the Washington Post.

Why it matters: Democrats say the removal of Tim Heaphy from his post after some three years while he's on leave from the university to investigate the insurrection is likely "retribution" for the House probe — an accusation strongly denied by the office of state Attorney General Jason Miyares (R).