Ongoing Lawsuit Challenges Voting-Related Restrictions in Georgia's SB 202

Feb. 27, 2023

A white sign with American flags in each corner reads, in red letters, Early Voting, and, in smaller blue letters, No Campaigning.  The sign is attached to poles on green grass, with cars on a road visible in the background.

A new Clearinghouse case entry, Sixth District of the African Methodist Episcopal Church (AME Church) v. Kemp, describes the ongoing challenge to Georgia's SB 202, which went into effect in 2021. SB 202 bans "line warming” -- volunteers providing water and snacks to voters waiting in line.  It also limits mobile voting units, requires identification for absentee ballots, and sets new restrictions on the timing and methods of voting early, absentee, or with secure drop boxes.

In March 2021, shortly after SB 202 took effect, five non-profit organizations filed a lawsuit challenging the law in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia. The case was ultimately consolidated with several other cases also challenging SB 202. The lawsuit principally challenges the effect of SB 202 on people of color and people with disabilities, alleging that the new restrictions burden the individual right to vote as well as the organizations' right to free expression.  The Court has denied defendants' motions to dismiss the case, as well as plaintiffs' motions for preliminary injunctive relief.  The parties are currently engaged in discovery, and the case is ongoing. 

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