Apr 15, 2022 - Politics

Trail Notes: What year is it?

Illustration of an elephant trunk and a donkey hoof reaching for a peach.

Illustration: Allie Carl/Axios

It’s 2022, but sometimes it still feels like 2018 ’round these parts.

One big flashback: Fair Fight, the voting rights group founded by Stacey Abrams, was in court all week challenging some of Georgia’s elections administration, including how the state checks the citizenship status of voters.

Why it matters: A federal judge could change the policy in his ruling.

The other side: Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger has latched onto the issue. On Monday he held his own press conference, highlighting more than 1,500 non-citizens who tried to register to vote and announced he’s referring the cases to state and local authorities to investigate.

  • None of those people was actually able to register.

Catch up quick: This was kind of a thing in 2018, when conservative media spread a video of Abrams saying the “blue wave” includes both “documented and undocumented” people, though she did not tell anyone to vote.

  • Republicans recently failed to pass a constitutional amendment to ban non-citizens from voting, even though the constitution already states only citizens can vote.

Atlanta immigration attorney Charles Kuck said of Raffensperger’s move: “I’ve seen this movie before. It ends the same way. It gins up the base so they come out and vote. It doesn’t solve any problems.”

  • Context: Raffensperger has a tough primary challenge from Trump-backed Rep. Jody Hice.

Scene of the week: On Tuesday, Sen. David Perdue announced new lines of attack against Gov. Brian Kemp: illegal immigration and the strength of the Georgia State Patrol. Perdue said, “We’ve got to get our state patrol back to the elite level that it always was.”

  • Kemp’s team took this as an attack on the troopers, consolidated a group of sheriffs to denounce the comments and called it an “unhinged rant.”

Trail mix: The same day as Perdue’s presser, Kemp signed the new law lifting the concealed carry permit requirement at the store where he recalled he and his wife bought their college-age daughter Lucy her first firearm. “A Glock,” he said.

  • After applause Kemp said: “Y’all didn’t let me finish. A Glock that she’s carrying today.”

Email Emma at [email protected] with what you think should be in next week’s Trail Notes.


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