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White House pushes back conservative argument over Georgia and Colorado voting laws amid MLB dispute


A dispute over election laws in Georgia and Colorado reached the White House briefing room on Tuesday after Major League Baseball announced a new location for the All-Star Game.

Press Secretary Jen Psaki was asked about the decision to move the Midsummer Classic from Atlanta to Denver to protest new election laws in Georgia that will make voting more difficult for many.

“Is the White House concerned that Major League Baseball is moving its All-Star Game to Colorado, where the voting rules are very similar to Georgia’s?” Fox News reporter Peter Doocy asked.

“Well, let me rebut the first point you raised,” Psaki said, before noting that Colorado allows election day registration and offers postal voting to every eligible resident.

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki at the Daily White House press conference on Tuesday. (Alex Wong / Getty Images)

“I think it’s important to remember the context here,” Psaki added. “Georgian law is based on a lie. There was no widespread fraud in the 2020 election, as Georgia’s top Republican election officials have repeatedly acknowledged in interviews. And finally, let me add one more thing: it’s up to Major League Baseball to determine where they host their All-Star Game.

Since MLB announced it would move its All-Star game to Denver in response to a new round of new Georgia election laws passed by Republicans following presidential losses and two races in the U.S. Senate, the conservatives argued that Colorado had already done so. pass laws on books that are similar to those of Peach State.

Voting rights groups say the new restrictions in Georgia will disproportionately affect the black community, which has contributed to the recent electoral success of ruling Democrats in the state. Georgia, which Joe Biden narrowly won in November, was one of the targets of former President Donald Trump’s baseless accusation that the presidential election was stolen from him.

Trump praised Georgia for its new laws in a statement, saying, “They have learned from the 2020 presidential parody, which can never happen again. Too bad these changes could not have been made sooner. “

After MLB announced Denver would host the All-Star Game, Sen. Tim Scott, RS.C. tweeted, “Georgia: Voter ID, 17 days of early voting. Colorado: voter identification, 15 days of early voting. Atlanta is 51% black. Denver is 9.2% black. @MLB moves #MLBAllStarGame out of ATL which has more voting rights than CO? The Wokes are starting over, guys.

Colorado’s limited early voting period doesn’t make sense in practice because most states – 94% in 2020 – vote by mail or drop box. The state requires ID upon registration to vote for the first time, and for those who wish to do so in person. But Colorado allows voters to use more than a dozen types of ID, such as student IDs or Medicare and Medicaid cards. If they do not have ID, they can vote provisionally and officials can verify their identity later.

White House pushes back conservative argument over Georgia and Colorado voting laws amid MLB dispute

Protesters wear shackles while holding a sit-in inside the Capitol Building in opposition to House Bill 531 on March 8, 2021 in Atlanta, Georgia. HB531 will limit early voting hours, remove drop boxes and require the use of government ID when voting by mail. (Megan Varner / Getty Images)

In contrast, Georgian law requires photo identification to vote in person, as well as some form of identification to vote by mail.

Postal voting systems also differ significantly in the two seats: in Colorado every eligible voter receives a ballot in the mail, compared to Georgia where a voter must apply, and there are many more locations. filing in Colorado than in Georgia.

Under new Peach State laws, a voter must provide a driver’s license number, a copy of a state ID card, or a Social Security number each time they vote by mail. Colorado does not need ID to vote by mail after initial registration. States also differ on voter registration, which is offered same day in Colorado but subject to an early October deadline in Georgia.

Colorado’s system resulted in a high turnout (second-best among all states in the 2020 election), and the Centennial State is hailed as one of the safest states to vote. While Colorado has trended blue in recent years, former Republican Senator Cory Gardner won in 2014, shortly after the new mail laws were put in place.

In addition to limiting mail voting windows, increasing voter identification restrictions and limiting placement in drop boxes, the Georgian Electoral Integrity Law of 2021, enacted by the GOP Governor, Brian Kemp, also gives state officials the power to take control of county electoral councils. and criminalizes the passage of food and drink through the voting lines.

Last week, MLB announced it was withdrawing this summer’s All-Star game from the Atlanta Braves’ Truist Stadium, located out of town in suburban Cobb County. The league faced a pushback from Republican politicians, along with boycotts and Texas Gov. Greg Abbott refused to start the opener in the Texas Ranger opener.

White House pushes back conservative argument over Georgia and Colorado voting laws amid MLB dispute

Brian Kemp, Governor of Georgia, speaks during a press conference at a mass covid-19 vaccination site at the Delta Flight Museum in Hapeville, Georgia, United States, Wednesday, February 25, 2021 (Elijah Nouvelage / Bloomberg via Getty Images)

There was, however, high-level Republican opposition to parts of the Georgia bill.

“There were things I didn’t like about the law at the start of the process and I spoke very loudly about it,” Georgia Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan told Yahoo News last month. “I think an important part of this is continuing to live around the mantra of making voting in Georgia easier to vote and harder to cheat.”

“I didn’t think it made sense for us to cancel the postal vote without an excuse,” Duncan said. “I was under the impression that the early drafts of the bill also limited the Sunday vote. I didn’t think it was a very good position to take.

“I [also] didn’t think it necessarily made sense [to not allow] water and food online, ”he added. “I think there were just better ways to do it.”

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