BREAKING: Georgia House Approves Bill Expanding Ability To Investigate Elections, Fraud
‘Election Integrity’ is Georgia’s flavor of the month! Georgia’s State House just passed a new bill that, among other things, seeks to expand state power when investigating elections. It grants more power to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation to investigate both election fraud and other election-related crimes and practices.
The main intention of the bill is outlined at the beginning of the text, explaining the expansion of state power in order to allow more substantive investigations into voter fraud.
House Bill 1464 states it will “provide the Georgia Bureau of Investigation with original jurisdiction to investigate election fraud and election crimes; to provide the Georgia Bureau of Investigation with subpoena power to further such investigations; to provide for penalty; to provide for related matters; to provide for an effective date and applicability; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.”
Voting for the bill followed party-lines with Republicans in favor and Democrats opposed; The final tally showed it passing 98-73.
— Georgia House of Representatives (@GaHouseHub) March 16, 2022
The bill also grants anybody the ability inspection of paper ballots after an election.
Reception of the bill was initially both widely positive and bipartisan, with Democrats agreeing that such transparency would be beneficial to Georgia’s electoral system.
But things soon took a quick turn. Fair Fight Action, a far-left self-dubbed “voting rights” group founded by failed former Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams, lambasted the bill, claiming it will target and harm voters. Georgia Democrats responded by immediately pulling any and all support for the bill, reported The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
The same outlet reported on the comments of the bill’s lead sponsor, Republican state Rep. Shaw Blackmon, who said that transparency is the key to building trust in elections.
“This bill would give voters more confidence and help them understand more thoroughly our process,” said Blackmon, who represents Bonaire. “Both parties wanted a paper ballot because people are more comfortable working with real documents. And this makes those documents open to public inspection.”
The legislation now reportedly will advances to the state Senate for a final vote before the 2022 legislative session concludes on April 4th.
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