Georgia’s sweeping new voting restrictions came under attack on Friday, with civil rights groups challenging them in court and President Joe Biden saying the U.S. Justice Department was examining what he called an “atrocity” of a law.
Among other limits, the Republican-backed law enacted on Thursday imposes stricter identification requirements, limits drop boxes, gives lawmakers the power to take over local elections and shortens the early voting period for all runoff elections. It also makes it a misdemeanor for people to offer food and water to voters here in line, in a state where people sometimes wait for hours in the heat to vote.
The legislation has alarmed Democrats, who just months ago celebrated historic wins in the presidential election and two Senate campaigns in Georgia that helped deliver the White House and U.S. Senate control to their party in Washington.
Biden, the first Democratic presidential candidate in three decades to win Georgia, on Friday accused Republicans there and in other states of mounting a broad assault on voting rights.