ACLU of Georgia

How SB202 Changes...

Secretary of State (SOS) & State Election Board (SEB)

Hover over the yellow boxes to see the changes

Before SB202

SOS was the chairperson and voting member of SEB.

After SB202 (Current Law)

SOS is no longer the chairperson of SEB and is now a non-voting member. The GA General Assembly elects the SEB chairperson.
§21-2-30(a) &(d); S.B. 202 §5

CONSEQUENCES

  • Diminishes SOS’s role and gives legislature majority of appointments on SEB.

Before SB202

SOS's office was independent.

After SB202 (Current Law)

SOS's office must provide all necessary support to the SEB if requested.
§21-2-33.1(h); S.B. 202 §6

CONSEQUENCES

  • Erodes the independence of the SOS.

Before SB202

SEB could take appropriate action to handle unexpected or emergency circumstances.

After SB202 (Current Law)

SEB may only adopt emergency rules or regulations in extreme circumstances. Allows the state legislature to overrule SEB emergency rules.
§21-2-33.1(a, S.B. 202 §8; §50-13-4(b); S.B. 202 §50

CONSEQUENCES

  • Heightens the threshold needed for SEB to adopt emergency rules and reduces SEB’s ability to respond to crises like the pandemic.

Before SB202

No process for SEB investigation into county elections.

After SB202 (Current Law)

SEB can conduct investigations into county elections, which can be initiated by petition or by SEB.
§21-2-33.2(a)&(b), S.B. 202 §7

CONSEQUENCES

  • Creates new (potentially political) process to initiate takeover of county elections.

Before SB202

County superintendents cannot be suspended by the SEB.

After SB202 (Current Law)

County superintendents can be suspended by the SEB. SEB replacement runs county elections with full authority.
§21-2-33.2 (a)&(b); S.B. 202 §7; and 21-2-33.1(g)&(f); S.B. 202 §6

CONSEQUENCES

  • Allows for county election takeovers.
  • Only 4 county elections can be taken over at a time.

Before SB202

The state legislature had limited say in state and county election administration.

After SB202 (Current Law)

The state legislature has an outsized influence over state and county election administration and has the power to take over and strongarm county elections through control of the SOS and SEB.

CONSEQUENCES

  • Politicizes election administration in Georgia.