A sweeping lawsuit filed Tuesday in the wake of Georgia’s fierce race for governor calls for a federal judge to overturn state laws that resulted in purged registrations, canceled ballots and many other obstacles to voting. Backed by former Democratic nominee for governor Stacey Abrams, the lawsuit continues a fight for voting rights that formed the foundation of her campaign. Abrams isn’t trying to change the result of this month’s election that she lost to Republican Brian Kemp, but the upcoming legal battle could decide the rules for elections in 2020 and beyond. The lawsuit, filed by a new group called Fair Fight Action, demands that Georgia use paper ballots to validate the accuracy of elections, stop canceling voter registrations of those who haven’t participated in a recent election and guarantee enough election equipment so voters don’t have to wait in line for three hours or more. It also seeks to weaken the state’s “exact match” law, which stalled voter registrations of some legitimate voters because they had hyphenated or long names.
“The constitutional rights of Georgians were trampled in the 2018 general election,” said Lauren Groh-Wargo, CEO for Fair Fight Action and Abrams’ campaign manager. “The general election for governor is over, but the citizens and voters of Georgia deserve an election system that they can have confidence in.”
Abrams has said the election wasn’t fair because it limited voting access, disenfranchised minorities and undermined the public’s trust in democracy. Abrams is a member of Fair Fight Action’s board but didn’t attend a press conference announcing the lawsuit at the Richard B. Russell federal court building.