Florida Governor Ron DeSantis signed a voter suppression bill into law earlier today during a Fox & Friends segment.
The Washington Post reports:
Like similar bills that Republicans are pushing in dozens of state legislatures nationwide, the Florida measure adds hurdles to voting by mail, restricts the use of drop boxes and prohibits any actions that could influence those standing in line to vote, which voting rights advocates said is likely to discourage nonpartisan groups from offering food or water to voters as they wait.
Florida’s law is immediately drawing challenges from nonpartisan voting rights, civil rights, and good government groups. The League of Women Voters of Florida is among those suing the state.
“Senate Bill 90 does not impede all of Florida’s voters equally,” the League of Women Voters argues in a lawsuit that they filed with two civil rights groups. “It is crafted to and will operate to make it more difficult for certain types of voters to participate in the state’s elections, including those voters who generally wish to vote with a vote-by-mail ballot and voters who have historically had to overcome substantial hurdles to reach the ballot box, such as Florida’s senior voters, youngest voters, and minority voters.”
CNN reports that in addition to the League of Women Voters lawsuit, other groups filed their own legal challenges to the new law:
A separate lawsuit filed Thursday morning by Common Cause, Florida branches of the NAACP and a disabilities rights group describes the new law as “the latest in a long line of voter suppression laws targeting Florida’s Black voters, Latino voters, and voters with disabilities.”
Florida’s new voting restrictions come a little more than a month after Georgia passed a similar bill derided as Jim Crow 2.0. The Georgia voter suppression law makes it illegal to give food or water to voters waiting in line. It also limits the use of convenient and secure ballot drop boxes, shortens the window to request a mail-in ballot, and restricts in-person early voting hours.
The assault on voting rights looks likely to continue. Texas and other Republican-led states are considering similar bills. HR 1 (also known as the For the People Act) is necessary to combat these concerted and organized attacks on our democracy.