Congress Opens Investigation Into Georgia’s Historic Voter Suppression

Georgia Governor Brian Kemp
Photo: Mark Wilson (Getty Images)

In a letter to Georgia Governor Brian Kemp, Congressional leaders revealed their plans to investigate the “Wizard of Voter Suppression” and his years of suppressing black voters’ access to the polls.

“The Committee on Oversight and Reform is investigating recent reports of serious problems with voter registration, voter access and other matters affecting the ability of people in Georgia to exercise their right to vote,” begins the letter to Kemp from Committee Chairman Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) and Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.), the chairman of the Subcommittee on Civil Rights and Civil Liberties. “The Committee is particularly concerned by reports that Georgians had unprecedented challenges with registering to vote and significant barriers to casting their votes during your tenure as Secretary of State and during the 2018 election.”

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Citing reports of Kemp’s historic voter suppression, purges, poll closings and election equipment mismanagement—including The Root’s exclusive report on the mysterious undervote in the Georgia Lt. Governor’s race—the committee requested documents, emails and communications regarding almost every aspect of Georgia elections.

Brian Kemp served as Georgia’s Secretary of State and election chief from 2010 until he won the governorship in a 2018 election, where he pulled out every voter suppression trick in the book. He warned Republican donors about the danger of widespread minority voters. He purged 1.4 million voters from the rolls. In a state that is 32 percent black, an Associated Press analysis showed that 70 percent of the 53,000 registrations he put on hold in 2018 belonged to black voters. He rejected thousands of absentee ballots.

This is in addition to the numerous hacks into Georgia’s voting system that he has repeatedly denied. This also doesn’t include the security flaws in the state’s voter database. The fact that the state’s voting machines are old and unable to be audited is also proof that Kemp is terrible at his job. Kemp is or has been a party in at least a dozen lawsuits regarding voter suppression in Georgia.

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He hasn’t won a single one.

In February, the Committee on House Administration made a field trip to Georgia to investigate voter suppression in Georgia. Stacey Abrams, who lost the governor’s race in spite of the tiny, insignificant fact that more voters may have voted for her, testified before the committee that same day before rushing off to another meeting where Brian Kemp’s legislative allies were trying to replace Georgia’s unauditable election machines with different unauditable election machines, only this time they would be provided by Brian Kemp’s political cronies.

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Brian Kemp has not publicly responded to the House Oversight Committee’s letter.

To be fair, he may have seen Elijah Cummings’ name and purged the letter, out of habit.

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Michael Harriot

World-renowned wypipologist. Getter and doer of "it." Never reneged, never will. Last real negus alive.