In Victory for Georgia Voters, Civic Participation Group VoteAmerica Resolves Claims in Lawsuit
ATLANTA, GA. – The state of Georgia has agreed to resolve the claims of plaintiff VoteAmerica, a civic engagement group, in a federal lawsuit filed by Campaign Legal Center against Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger. The resolution of these claims affirms that the anti-voter law S.B. 202’s restrictions on absentee ballot application distribution do not apply to voter engagement tools like VoteAmerica’s, which requires the voter themselves to initiate the request to the third-party organization for an absentee ballot application. The agreed upon stipulation of dismissal, filed with the court yesterday, effectively allows VoteAmerica to proceed with their voter engagement model as is.
Signed into law in 2021, S.B. 202 limits the ability of nonprofit civic engagement organizations to distribute absentee ballot applications to Georgia voters in violation of the First Amendment. CLC, along with the law firm Smith, Gambrell, and Russell LLP, continues to challenge the law as the case moves forward with remaining plaintiffs Voter Participation Center and the Center for Voter Information, who have a different approach to voter engagement than VoteAmerica and continue to be directly impacted by the burdensome prohibitions of S.B. 202.
“This is a victory for Georgia voters and for VoteAmerica, even as we keep fighting in the courts for groups still negatively impacted by S.B. 202,” said Danielle Lang, senior director for voting rights at Campaign Legal Center. “We look forward to coordinating with our partners in Georgia to help inform and educate other organizations with models like VoteAmerica’s that they can continue their voter outreach efforts. The collective work of these organizations to assist voters and strengthen our democracy should be commended instead of being called into question or halted by frivolous, anti-voter laws.”
"The team at VoteAmerica is celebrating this win for voters," says Daniel McCarthy, VP of Finance and Operations for VoteAmerica. "VoteAmerica stands firmly in its position that Georgia's interference in our association with and assistance to Georgia voters who request it is anti-democratic and unconstitutional. VoteAmerica will continue to pursue just fights with any state that stands in the way of our mission to support all eligible voters, to increase voter turnout and to strengthen American democracy."
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