House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) said Tuesday that companies pulling out of Georgia over the state’s new voting rights law should first read the bill to find out what the law requires.
“Why is it so wrong that somebody has to show an ID, that you have accuracy in elections, or in a Georgia law that you’re allowed to have an election by mail or vote early. I think that’s appropriate. I think people should read bills before they make judgments,” said McCarthy during an interview with CNBC’s “Squawk Box.”
McCarthy made the comment in response to a question about Major League Baseball (MLB) moving its All-Star Game to Colorado over Georgia’s new voting requirements, and other multinational companies like Apple criticizing Republican bills as racist and suppressive.
“Well, I’ve been really concerned, because if they looked at H.R. 1, how would these companies feel about having a speech czar that goes against your First Amendment rights, or how would they feel about H.R. 1 that said taxpayers would fund campaigns six to one to many of the people that they probably wouldn’t want to support,” said McCarthy.
“Or how would they feel about changing the Federal Election Commission, that is bipartisan today and weighted towards one party over the other. So now my fear would be they would want to leave America,” added McCarthy.
H.R. 1, also called the For the People Act, passed the Democrat-controlled House on a largely party-line vote of 220–210 on March 3. All Republicans voted against the bill, joined by Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.), the only Democrat who voted against it.
Thompson told The Epoch Times that his opposition was driven by constituents who were against the redistricting portion of the bill as well as the section on public finances.
Top sponsors of H.R. 1 said in a Jan. 4 press statement that it is an “anti-corruption” bill introduced to fight voter suppression, gerrymandering, and “special-interest dark money.”
“H.R. 1 will protect the right to vote, ensure the integrity of our elections, hold elected officials accountable, and end the era of big, dark, special-interest money in our politics,” said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), Chair of the House Administration Committee Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-Calif.), and Democracy Reform Task Force Chair Rep. John Sarbanes (D-Md.) in the joint statement.
Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.) said in a video released April 9 that H.R. 1 will make it easier to commit fraud.
“I’m a firm believer to make it easy to vote, but hard to cheat. That bill H.R. 1 makes it easy to vote and easy to cheat, and it’s really easy to be able to do fraud,” Lankford said.
And while GOP lawmakers are against H.R. 1 because they want states to control their own elections and accountability in voting, Democrats want to nationalize elections and are calling changes to voting, such as in Georgia, undemocratic and suppressive.
In response to the outcry over his state’s new law, Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp, during an April 3 press conference, said the recent reforms put the state ahead in terms of expanding voting accessibility. He compared his state’s law with election regulations in Democrat-led New York.
“In New York, they have 10 days of early voting. In Georgia, we have a minimum of 17, with two additional Sundays that are optional for all counties in our state. In New York, you have to have an excuse to vote by absentee. In Georgia, you can vote absentee for any reason and you can do it securely,” Kemp said.
“It’s easier to vote in Georgia than it is in New York.”
Janita Kan and Samuel Allegri contributed to this report.