Brian Kemp, Georgia’s Republican Secretary of State, is removing voters from the rolls as he’s running for governor against Democratic nominee Stacey Abrams, who would be the first black woman elected if it’s not stolen from her.
Randolph County, Georgia, which is majority Black, was about to have two-thirds of its polling stations closed based on the recommendation of a consultant named Michael Malone. It was beaten back, it’s not going to happen because Black folk control that county council. However, here’s the danger, and here’s what’s not generally being reported: Malone is a consultant that was picked by Kemp who is running for governor. So Kemp is counting the votes, determining who votes, where they vote, and if they vote.
Here’s the other danger: Kemp had told Malone, and other consultants, to “consolidate” — that’s a fancy word for saying “close” — polling stations wherever he could around the state. So it may be stopped in Randolph County, but the problem is all the other counties in Georgia, where many are white controlled, that are “consolidating” — in other words closing — polling stations in Black areas. That’s not being watched, that’s not being covered by the press.
And an important footnote, very important: This could not have happened before the 2013 gutting of the Voting Rights Act. Because Georgia was under federal control and the federal government had to approve any closing of any polling station in Georgia to certify that it had no racial effect. Now you’ve got to find it. They found it in Randolph, but that’s just one county, and it’s a county where they could correct it.
I think we’re going to see massive polling station closures all over Georgia. And when you removed half a million voters from the rolls — Kemp removed 591,548 voters from the rolls in 2017 — hey, that’s a good excuse to close polling stations. They can just say, we don’t have as many voters as we used to have. Hmmm???
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