Georgia Senate passes four voting bills, including ID for absentee ballots applications

Georgia State Sen. Larry Walker said measures are about "allowing the Georgia public to have confidence in the vote."
Georgia voter stickers

The Georgia Senate has approved four election bills including one that will require ID verification for absentee ballot applicants.

One of the bills, SB 67, adds an ID requirement to paper requests for absentee ballots and would require either a driver's license number, state ID number, or photocopy of a photo ID that would be needed for in-person voting, according to news reports.

"It's not about disenfranchising voters," said Sen. Larry Walker, who sponsored the bills passed Tuesday. "It's not about overly burdening the electorate. It's about efficiency, integrity, allowing the Georgia public to have confidence in the vote."

The measures passed by the GOP-led chamber follow the Nov. 3 elections in the state in which ballot integrity was a concern.

Another bill passed unanimously by the State Senate would, if enacted, require election officials to begin processing absentee ballots a week before the election.

"Give people the totals," Republican State Sen. Bill Cowsert said. "Let people have the peace of mind that nothing's being done in the dark of night." 

Other bills attempt to ban Sunday voting, limit the window to request absentee ballots, and stop counties from uploading results until they can confirm from where each ballot came — absentee, early voter or Election Day.