Voting Restrictions

AP News | |

Texas Republicans advanced new voting restrictions Thursday night after months of protests by Democrats, who after returning from a 38-day walkout are now all but out of ways to stop a bill that includes a ban on drive-thru voting and would empower poll watchers.

The nearly 50-page bill passed the Texas House on a 79-37 mostly party-line vote, moving fast a week after Democrats ended their holdout. Republican Gov. Greg Abbott says he will sign the measure that is on track to reach his desk by early September, if not sooner.

AP News | |

A Texas state senator ended a 15-hour filibuster Thursday in the Democrats’ latest defiance over new voting restrictions, but it only delayed Republicans who went on to approve the sweeping elections bill just minutes after she wearily left the floor.

The GOP’s sustained efforts to tighten Texas’ election laws, however, remained no closer to Republican Gov. Greg Abbott’s desk than a month ago. Democrats are still refusing to show up in the state House of Representatives in a standoff that has now dragged on for 32 days, preventing the Senate bill from going any farther.

Kimberly Redmond | | Inc (Nasdaq: AMZN), Apple Inc (Nasdaq: AAPL), Facebook Inc (Nasdaq: FB) and PepsiCo Inc (NYSE: PEP) are among the more than 160 companies calling on US lawmakers to pass legislation to restore and protect voting rights.

In a letter released Wednesday, the companies, part of a group called Business for Voting Rights, urged Congress to reintroduce the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act, legislation that would restore a key provision of the 1965 law that was eliminated by a 2013 Supreme Court ruling.

AP News | |

President Joe Biden declared preserving voting rights an urgent national “test of our time” on Tuesday but offered few concrete proposals to meet it. Texas Democrats took their own dramatic action to stymie Republican efforts to tighten ballot restrictions in their state.

Biden, who has proclaimed protecting ballot access the central cause of his presidency, has faced sharp criticism from allies for not doing more, though political headwinds and stubborn Senate math have limited his ability to act. Despite his ringing words Tuesday, he avoided any mention of trying to alter the Senate filibuster rule that stands in the path of federal legislation.

AP News | |

President Joe Biden will lay out the “moral case” for voting rights as he faces growing pressure from civil rights activists and other Democrats to combat efforts by Republican-led state legislatures to restrict access to the ballot.

Biden has declared that protecting voting rights was the central cause of his presidency, but the White House has taken sharp criticism from allies for not doing more while contending with political headwinds and stubborn Senate math that have greatly restricted its ability to act.

Kimberly Redmond | |

Hundreds of corporations, executives and celebrities have come out against voting restrictions that a number of states across the US are considering implementing.

Published Wednesday as a two-page advertisement in The New York Times and The Washington post, the statement’s signatories include corporations like Inc (Nasdaq: AMZN), Starbucks Corp (Nasdaq: SBUX) and Apple Inc (Nasdaq: AAPL) and individuals including actor Leonardo DiCaprio and actor-producer-playwright Lin-Manuel Miranda.

Reuters | |

The top executives of more than three dozen Michigan-based companies, including General Motors Co and Ford Motor Co, on Tuesday issued a joint statement opposing Republican-backed legislation to restrict voting.

The move appeared to be pre-emptive, after Georgia companies such as Coca-Cola Co and Delta Air Lines Inc endured public backlash for failing to take a stronger stance before that state enacted a raft of voting limits last month.

Reuters | |

Colorado Rockies’ stadium Coors Field will host July’s All-Star Game, Major League Baseball (MLB) said on Tuesday, after the annual event was relocated from Atlanta in protest over Georgia’s new voting restrictions.

MLB Commissioner Robert Manfred on Friday ordered the sport to relocate its 2021 All-Star Game after Georgia instituted the new voting rules, which Republican politicians endorsed but critics have said aim to suppress voting among Black people and other racial minorities who tend to vote Democratic.

Reuters | |

U.S. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell lashed out at corporate America on Monday, warning CEOs to stay out of the debate over a new voting law in Georgia that has been criticized as restricting votes among minorities and the poor.

In a sign of a growing rift in the decades-old alliance between the conservative party and U.S. corporations, McConnell said: “My advice to the corporate CEOs of America is to stay out of politics. Don’t pick sides in these big fights.”

Kimberly Redmond | |

Major League Baseball's decision to move its All-Star Game out of Georgia over the state's voting restrictions will cost local businesses more than $100 million in lost tourism dollars, according to Atlanta-area tourism industry officials.

Cobb County Travel and Tourism Bureau chief Holly Quinlan said during a Friday news conference that the game, which was scheduled for July 13 at Truist Park, “would have been a big boost” to local hotels, transportation, entertainment, restaurants and retail, many of which are still trying to rebound from the COVID-19 pandemic.