Voter Rights

“The vote is the most powerful nonviolent tool we have. We must use it." - Congressman John Lewis

The ACLU of Georgia proudly champions, protects, and defends YOUR sacred, constitutional right to vote.

Voting is the cornerstone of our democracy upon which all of civil liberties rest. The ACLU of Georgia works to protect and expand the freedom to vote of every Georgian.

Following the 2016 election, the fight for voting rights remains as critical as ever. Politicians across the nation continue to engage in voter suppression, efforts to stop citizens from exercising their sacred right to vote. Through litigation and advocacy, the ACLU of Georgia is fighting back against attempts to curtail as well as fighting to expand access to this fundamental right in our democracy.

The ACLU of Georgia  

  • prevented the Fulton County Board of Elections from closing multiple polling places in predominately African American neighborhoods in 2017

  • defended a Latina community member running for the state House of Representatives who was unfairly removed from the ballot in Hall County in 2018

  • prevented the Secretary of State from illegally removing nearly 160,000 registered voters from the active voting rolls in 2018

  • forced the Secretary of State

    – to take off its website misleading voter registration forms that demanded documentation that neither federal nor state law required and

    – to stop using government resources to misdirect Georgians to his campaign website and social media

  • won a federal court battle against the Sumter County Board of Education for discriminating against Black voters in violation of the Voting Rights Act of 1965

  • stopped the town of Thunderbolt from illegally removing 10% of its own residents from the voter rolls based on whether the voter’s name was on the city’s water bill

  • monitors closely Gwinnett County to ensure they provide Spanish-language ballots and materials in all elections as required by federal law

  • stopped Cobb County from illegally rejecting e-mailed requests for absentee ballot

  • reopened the campus polling place on the Valdosta State University that had been closed for 10 years

  • demanded that Gwinnett and all other county election officials count absentee ballots that are missing birth date information

  • demanded that the Baldwin County Registrar’s Office comply with state and federal voter registration laws and stop requiring copies of photo identification to accompany every voter registration application as well as remain open during regular business hours without exception

  • secured a permanent Federal Court injunction to protect voters from county officials without handwriting analysis expertise from rejecting absentee ballots based on the voter’s handwriting without providing due process for the voter to verify their handwriting

  • defeated bills would have limited voter rights by rolling back from 8pm to 7pm, the closing time for voting inside the city of Atlanta. The bills would have also reduced weekend early voting throughout the state

  • forced DeKalb and Fulton counties to agree to comply with state law to keep Atlanta election day polling places open until 8pm and to publicize these hours

  • forced Irwin County to abandon its plans to close polling locations in a way that would have made it significantly more difficult for Black and low-income voters to cast a ballot

  • filed federal lawsuit against Gwinnett, Cobb, Fulton, and DeKalb Counties for election mismanagement that resulted in disenfranchisement in the 2018 elections

  • testified at the Congressional Field Hearing On Voting Rights And Election Administration In Georgia

  • provided guidance to county officials on the proper treatment of provisional ballots

  • prevented Randolph County, a county that is over 60% African American, from closing 7 out of 9 polling places on the eve of the November 2018 elections

  • successfully lobbied to include in the new elections law – permission for early voting locations to be housed in non-government buildings which can expand the number of eligible polling places for early voting

    – prohibition from automatically removing from the voter rolls people who elections officials believe are serving sentences for a felony conviction, beliefs that are often based on inaccurate database – expanding from 10 to 60 days before an election the time during which a county is prohibited from closing polling places

  • filed federal lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of requiring voters to buy postage stamps when submitting mail-in absentee ballots and mailing in absentee ballot applications. This is tantamount to a poll tax.