The Justice Department is suing Georgia over a sweeping new voting law passed by the state's Republican-led legislature, marking the first major step taken by the Biden administration to interfere with state-level election laws enacted since the 2020 election.
According to the New York Times, this will be one of the highest-profile enforcement actions since 2013, when the Supreme Court neutered the government's ability to stop states from passing laws viewed as facilitating voter discrimination.
The lawsuit shows that the Justice Department under the Biden administration intends to use the remaining tools at its disposal to aggressively fight state actions that it sees as potentially disenfranchising minority voters.
Mr. Garland said earlier this month that the department would deploy all of its available tools to combat voter discrimination. -NYT
The DOJ is expected to accuse Georgia of effectively discriminating against nonwhite voters through the Election Integrity Act of 2021, which requires voter ID on absentee ballots, limits the use of drop boxes, expands early in-person voting, bars officials from sending out unsolicited absentee ballot request forms, narrows the window for requesting an absentee ballot, and makes it a crime for outside groups to give voters food or water while waiting in line to vote. The law also affords state legislators greater control over how elections are administered, and shortens runoff elections.
This, according to President Biden, is "Jim Crow in the 21st century."
As the Times notes, the lawsuit comes days after GOP lawmakers blocked Democratic voting legislation.