For Immediate Release
Common Cause Celebrates U.S. District Court for Northern District of Georgia Order to Grant Emergency Relief to Georgia Voters, Ensuring Access to the Ballot in Midterm Election
Atlanta, GA - Judge Eleanor Louise Ross of the U.S. District Court for Northern District of GA today ordered that Georgia voters whose registration applications had been left pending under Georgia’s “Exact Match” program are now allowed to exercise their right to vote in the midterm election on November 6.
What it means for Georgia voters: Georgia voters who had been told they were ineligible to vote based on their failure to meet the criteria of Georgia’s Exact Match program will now be able to cast a vote and have it counted toward 2018 midterm election results.
Judge Ross granted preliminary relief in a coalition lawsuit that the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law filed and Common Cause and many other voting rights groups joined, against Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp for holding up voter registrations that didn’t meet “exact match” standards. The Lawyers Committee contended in the suit filed that the “exact match” practice is discriminatory, unlawful and a voter suppression scheme.
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For valuable background on Georgia’s exact match program and its impact from non-partisan Politifact Georgia:
Common Cause Georgia Executive Director Sara Henderson reacted: “Secretary Brian Kemp, who is already acting as the fox guarding the hen house, given his dual roles of Secretary of State and gubernatorial candidate, must play fair. Today, the court has instructed him to do so, and Georgians can rejoice that their voices will be heard in this election.”
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Common Cause is a nonpartisan, nonprofit advocacy organization founded in 1970 by John Gardner as a vehicle for citizens to make their voices heard in the political process and to hold their elected leaders accountable to the public interest.