NAACP and others weigh in on voting bills on the table

New bills could revamp the voting process

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - Plenty of attention is on Georgia right now for a new law which includes sweeping voting restrictions, and many are wondering if Alabama is next.

But the voting debate is also happening at a national level.

Earlier this week our crews spoke with Alabama’s Secretary of State John Merrill who opposes HR1, a bill that would revamp the voting system.

“Unfortunately, S1 and HR 1 would allow for ballot harvesting, curbside voting, for same day voter registration. Allow for automatic voter registration. So many things Alabamians are opposed to because our singular goal is to make it easier to vote and harder to cheat the singular goal of this bill makes it easier to cheat in every state,” Secretary of State Merrill said.

He also said if any bill that restricts the state from requiring an ID to vote passes, it would compromise election integrity.

“Our people are very supportive of the voter ID law, not only has it enhanced the process, but it has not restricted the process because we continue to break records with participation,” he said.

Meanwhile, President of the Alabama State Conference of the NAACP Bernard Simelton disagrees.

“It should not be that. You are a citizen of the United States you should be eligible to vote,” Simelton said.

He supports allowing those who served time behind bars to cast their ballots.

“If they do the time and pay their fines and they will automatically have their voting rights restored and now have to go through a long drawn out process to apply,” Simelton said.

He also said the new Georgia law is outrageous.

The law among other provisions adds new voter ID requirements for absentee voting, limits the number of ballot drop boxes and makes it a crime to give voters standing in line food or water.

“Now what kind of craziness is that? You are standing in line and a person can’t give you a drink of water?” he questioned.

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