Georgia’s State Senate has passed a new rule to prevent voter fraud using absentee ballots. The bill was sent to the state’s House after the state Senate passed it by a 35-to-18 vote this week.
The new law will require people to submit a valid ID to use an absentee ballot in Georgia. The IDs which are acceptable are a driver’s license, an ID card or any federal identification.
Georgia’s Democratic lawmakers opposed the law and said is was “voter suppression.” Claiming it would be hard for low-earners to get a license. Supporters of the bill responded by citing Georgia law that prevents the state from profiting from voter IDs.
“This is a common-sense rule to change our process for obtaining an absentee ballot — not casting the ballot. And to ensure that the Board of Elections will stay out of verifying our elections,” state Senator Larry Walker III (R-Perry) said. “So it’s a security measure and efficiency measure. This will not disenfranchise anyone.”
Proponents say the bill is simply about keeping Georgia’s laws consistent as citizens are required to show ID at the polls. The changes come after Georgia had a 20 percent increase in absentee voters in the November election.
The state Senate also looked at three other bills that lawmakers said will restore election confidence. The legislation includes laws that would lower the time window for absentee voting and force voters to reveal why they are using an absentee ballot.