Today, Fulton County Commissioners began the process of legally challenging the State of Georgia over Senate Bill or SB202. In a Resolution titled “Stop Voter Suppression” sponsored by Commissioner Khadijah Abdur-Rahman, the Board voted 4-2 to adopt her Resolution.
“This puts us as a county on the right side of history,” said Commissioner Khadijah. “I am happy that Fulton County has gone on record as the very first government that may challenge Senate Bill 202 this restrictive ‘Jim Crow’ racist law and I hope the other 158 counties do the same.”
Commissioner Lee Morris, a Buckhead area Republican, lamented before casting a no vote on the resolution. “This is a really tough issue. There is no way that a white man in America could understand the feelings of the people of color have about these really important issues,” Morris said. “And I hear you.”
Joining Morris in the SB202 challenge was fellow north Fulton Republican Bob Ellis who voted no. Democrats, Chairman Robb Pitts and Vice Chair Natalie Hall and Commissioner Marvin Arrington Jr. joined Khadijah in voting yes.
The Resolution does four things:
1. Affirms the County’s support of H.R.1 and H.R.4, the enacting of the “For The People Act” (H.R.1) and the “John Lewis Voting Rights Enhancement Act” (H.R.4) to offset adverse effects of Georgia Senate Bill 202 restrictive measures on voting in Georgia.
2. Directs the County Attorney to provide legal methods (in court or out of court) the County may use to fight implementation of SB202 and other voter-suppression legislation enacted by the State of Georgia.
3. Directs the County Manager and the Elections Supervisor to provide methods and procedures to maintain and expand equal access to the ballot consistent with SB202 and other Georgia election laws.
4. Directs County’s Diversity and Civil Rights Compliance Office to provide legal methods available to protect and preserve Fulton County voters’ rights guaranteed under County, State and Federal laws, such as the U.S. Voting Rights Act of 1965.