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Conversation about voting rights continues

Published: Jul. 15, 2021 at 1:36 AM EDT
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COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - A push from the left for Congress to pass legislation protecting voting rights continues with the latest call to action coming from President Joe Biden.

Georgia’s new voting law has been a controversial topic for months now.

President Joe Biden’s speech in Philadelphia this week continues calls for Congress to pass a Voting Rights Act as more than a dozen states have new voting laws including the Peach State.

“He talked about the big lie. Well, my observation of what he said that the only big lie is the fact that this Georgia law suppresses the voter. That is a lie,” said Alton Russell, chair of Columbus-Muscogee County Republicans.

“I think the speech was great, but unless we do some other things, we’re going to have to some problems in the future,” said Columbus NAACP President Wane Hailes.

Hailes says instead of talking about the problems he sees with Georgia’s Voting Law, he likes to talk about solutions like getting out in the community to get people registered to vote. “We’ve just got to get out and inform the people of they need to have when they go to vote. We can sit and lament about all the problems. Okay, they’re suppressing, but we know the problems. But we have to get out and do what we need to do - educate our people that they have to have their picture ID.”

Russell says a few things Georgia’s voting law does includes increasing the number of days for early voting and making dropboxes legal. “This law does not prevent, now, anybody from voting. If you live in the state of Georgia and you live in a county and you’re a resident of that county and you’re a registered voter, you go to the polls or get a absentee ballot and vote. There’s nothing that keeps anybody from voting.”

Dropboxes will only be open for voters to drop off their absentee ballots when the precinct is open and there is a person there. There is also now one Saturday included in early voting.

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