A week after Georgia passed their election reform bill, SB 202, a bill that makes it harder to vote and gives Republican state legislatures the power to toss out election results at their pleasure, Delta Airlines CEO Ed Bastian wrote the following in a memo to employees:
“I need to make it crystal clear that the final bill is unacceptable and does not match Delta’s values.”After having time to now fully understand all that is in the bill, coupled with discussions with leaders and employees in the Black community, it’s evident that the bill includes provisions that will make it harder for many underrepresented voters, particularly Black voters, to exercise their constitutional right to elect their representatives, that is wrong. The entire rationale for this bill was based on a lie: that there was widespread voter fraud in Georgia in the 2020 elections, this is simply not true. Unfortunately, that excuse is being used in states across the nation that are attempting to pass similar legislation to restrict voting rights.”
Later the same day, James Quincey, Chief Executive for Atlanta based Coca Cola, also denounced the Republican plan to disenfranchise voters:
“I want to be crystal clear, the Coca-Cola Company does not support this legislation, as it makes it harder for people to vote, not easier.”
The condemnation by both companies came after a slew of public threats were made to boycott all Atlanta-based corporations.
Atlanta Governor Brian Kemp retaliated by stripping Delta of a multimillion-dollar tax break.
Delta has 49 other states to choose from; perhaps they’ll consider relocating.
Early on Thursday, the Texas Senate passed a voter suppression bill similar to the Atlanta bill, targeting working Texans, and communities of color.
Texas is the 42nd state, to pass legislation that makes voting more difficult. This coordinated Republican attack on democracy harkens back to America’s Jim Crow Laws of 1965.
My question to Texas-based American Airlines: Given the Delta Airlines denunciation of the Georgia bill, what is American Airlines’ position on the Texas bill?
American Airlines has issued a press release answering my question:
They no likely.🥳
Dallas Texas-based AT&T joined in the fray.
Today Major League Baseball announced the All-Star Game and Draft will be moved out of Atlanta in response to the state’s new voter suppression bill. This decision came days after a statement by President Joe Biden that he would “strongly support” moving the MLB All-Star Game out of Georgia.
To be fair, Republican politicians are panicking. They see the writing on the wall. Their agenda, working for the rich at the expense of the poor, their attempts to dismantle healthcare and Social Security, their attacks on the rights of women,
people of color, and the LGBTQ, community only appeal to approximately 35% of the country. (What is wrong with that 35%?) The only way Republicans can retain power is to cheat. Gerrymandering gave them more than their rightful share of representation in the House, and the fact that a Republican state like Wyoming, with a population of 578,000, is represented by two Senators, while Democratic California, with 39.51 million people gets the same number, two Senators, I would say there is unequal representation in the Senate too. The minority party has an advantage unequal to their population.
Don’t get me started on the Electoral College.
Rather than change their policies to reflect changing values, Republicans have chosen a different path. They’ve publicly stated that if everyone votes they can’t win, and that fact was underscored with the record number voter turnout in the 2020 election. That gave them the impetus to legislate the disenfranchisement of Democratic voters.
Their argument for doing so has been based on Trump’s lie. The repeated claim that there was “widespread voter fraud,” in 2020 is an allegation that was disproven in 63 lawsuits filed by that former guy. Despite their claims, their bills are not about election integrity. They are about republicans retaining power.
The simple truth is that Republicans lost control of the White House, and Congress because more people voted for Democrats, and now they plan to cheat through legislation. The Republican party’s refusal to adapt to a changing demographic with changing values will eventually lead to their demise because evolution always wins.
We can fight back by passing the H. R. 1. act. This federal bill would override anything the state does.
H.R.1. Act: “To expand Americans’ access to the ballot box, reduce the influence of big money in politics, strengthen ethics rules for public servants, and implement other anti-corruption measures for the purpose of fortifying our democracy, and for other purposes.”
There are two hurdles to overcome: while we have a 50/50 Senate, with a Democratic Vice President to break the tie, two of the Democratic Senators are Democrats in name only; they often vote with Republicans. Another problem we have is the filibuster. Biden can overrule the filibuster, but we still need to sway fifty Senators to pass the bill.
The other way we can overcome these bills is to vote in record numbers again. I think we will.