A wave of new election laws caused an uproar among progressive activists, leading some big companies to take a political stance. Some companies and executives have expressed their opposition to the new bills, notably in Georgia.
Amazon, General Motors and others issued a joint statement opposing the voting restrictions. Earlier this month, Major League Baseball reportedly moved the All-Star Game out of Georgia to protest the new bill, and the CEO of Delta Airlines said the voting law was “unacceptable”.
“Well, companies obviously have no idea what they’re talking about because [from] many of their objections, it’s pretty clear that they haven’t actually read the bill, ”said Hans von Spakovsky, a senior lawyer at the Heritage Foundation.
“They don’t seem to understand this, that … the requirements of Georgian law are really not that different from those of many other states across the country,” he said. “In fact, in some ways their law is less strict than in places like New York and New Jersey.”
The new law in Georgia requires voter identification for absentee voting, limits the use of drop boxes, and restricts the distribution of food and water to voters queuing near polling stations. Supporters believe these measures will increase security and confidence in the elections.
Opponents of such bills say they target low-income voters who have less flexibility to vote during working hours and who are less likely to have a driver’s license or other forms of identity .
“Georgia, perhaps more than any other state, has benefited financially from the success of the civil rights movement,” said People For the American Way president Ben Jealous.
“And so Governor Kemp shouldn’t find it surprising that if he wanted to send his state back to Jim Crow, this big business and these companies would withdraw from their involvement in his state,” Jealous said.
Watch the video above to find out how these voting laws have caused a backlash in business.