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Judge blocks Georgia officials from rejecting certain absentee ballots

Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp. Photo: Jessica McGowan/Getty Images
Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp. Photo: Jessica McGowan/Getty Images

A federal judge issued a temporary restraining order on Wednesday to block Georgia election officials from tossing out absentee ballots with mismatched signatures, in response to two suits brought by voting rights advocates that argued hundreds were improperly rejected.

Why it matters: Georgia's highly-contested gubernatorial race is clouded by concerns of voter suppression following a report that said tens of thousands of voters, predominantly African Americans, were placed on hold.

The details: U.S. District Judge Leigh May ordered Secretary of State Brian Kemp's office, who is also the Republican nominee for governor, to end the practice for the midterm elections. Her ruling also included a procedure to allow voters to resolve the alleged discrepancies which disproportionately affected Asian Americans and African American voters.

Voting rights advocates said election officials have violated voters' constitutional rights for failing to give voters a chance to fix the problem.

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