ATLANTA – Today, a federal court denied the three motions to dismiss litigation filed by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) and others challenging 2021 Georgia law S.B. 202. These motions were filed by the State of Georgia, county defendants, and intervenor defendants (which include the Republican National Committee and other campaign arms of the Republican Party).
The case, Sixth District of the African Methodist Episcopal Church, et al. v. Kemp, et al. (in short, AME Church v. Kemp) is now scheduled to proceed.
The SPLC represents clients Georgia Muslim Voter Project, Women Watch Afrika, Latino Community Fund Georgia, and The Arc of the United States. Co-counsel in this litigation include the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc., American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), ACLU of Georgia, and law firms Davis, Wright, Tremaine and WilmerHale.
The following statement on the decision is by Poy Winichakul, staff attorney for the SPLC:
“We are pleased that the Court has denied every motion to dismiss before it and approved our legal challenge of Georgia’s anti-voter law S.B. 202 to move forward to discovery on all of the claims within the litigation.
“The right to vote is one of the most fundamental freedoms of a democracy and one of the most important ways people can advocate for themselves and their communities. Through their vote, citizens can direct social and economic policies that impact their daily lives and hold elected officials accountable.
“As the litigation proceeds, we believe it will become even clearer how S.B. 202 was based on a false and dangerous narrative about past elections, erects unlawful barriers to voting, and places undue burdens on Georgians.
“While the Biden Administration hosts a global Summit for Democracy right now, we call again on the U.S. Senate to strengthen democracy at home and pass without delay federal legislation expanding voting access and restoring the Voting Rights Act. Protecting voters in Georgia and across the country is far too important to leave to next year.”
The full decision can be viewed here: https://www.splcenter.org/sites/default/files/show_temp.pdf