Ballot drop boxes are available 24 hours a day with a video surveillance system in Colorado, similar to the drop boxes Georgia permitted last year amid the coronavirus pandemic. Georgia’s voting law now limits the usefulness of drop boxes, only allowing them inside early voting locations and available only during voting hours.
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Providing the facts and context that help readers understand the current debate over voting laws is a priority for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Our journalists work hard to be fair and will follow this complex story as it continues to develop.
For a better understanding of the issues driving Legislative action, click on these links.
• 15 headlines that explain the current debate
• Latest news on voting bills
Election officials in Colorado verify mailed ballots based on voter signatures, as Georgia did in previous years. In future elections, Georgia will check absentee ballots based on driver’s license numbers, state ID numbers or other documentation instead of signatures.
Colorado also allows voters to register through election day, enabling them to vote in person immediately. Georgia has one of the earliest voter registration deadlines in the country, requiring new voters to sign up 29 days before election day.
In all, Colorado’s election laws emphasize voter accessibility while Georgia’s laws require more effort from voters.
“I wish Georgia would move in the other direction,” said state Rep. Mary Frances Williams, a Democrat from Marietta whose district is near the Atlanta Braves’ stadium. “Voting is a right, and I don’t at all understand making people jump through hoops to vote. I don’t get it.”
But supporters of Georgia’s voting laws say they’re better than Colorado’s, offering two more days of in-person early voting, four more days of mail-in voting, optional Sunday voting and free voter ID cards.
Republican Gov. Brian Kemp said Georgia’s laws help ensure that only eligible voters are able to cast ballots, and he blamed MLB for “caving” to liberals.
“For those who are keeping track, Georgia has 17 days of early voting. Colorado has 15. When it comes to cancel culture, facts don’t matter,” Kemp wrote on Twitter on Tuesday.
Turnout in Colorado was the second-highest in the nation in the presidential election, with 76% of the voting-eligible population casting ballots, trailing only Minnesota, according to the United States Election Project.
In Georgia, 68% of eligible voters participated in the general election, the 26th-highest turnout in the nation.