Headline RoundupJanuary 12th, 2022

Will New Republican-backed Voting Laws Restrict Voters or Help Secure Elections?

Summary from the AllSides News Team

President Joe Biden and Democrats are fighting to push new voting laws while condemning Republicans' efforts to do the same. Are their concerns warranted or exaggerated?

In 2021, there were 285 new election laws passed across 42 states. In Georgia, new rules prevent government entities from mailing unsolicited absentee ballots and tighten how ballot drop-boxes are used. In Texas, voters must provide extra detail when applying to vote by mail. In Montana, voters can no longer register to vote on Election Day. Biden accused Republicans in a Tuesday voting rights speech of weaponizing the filibuster to obstruct new voting rights legislation, and said he supported eliminating the filibuster "to prevent a minority of senators from blocking action on voting rights."

Coverage from left- and center-rated outlets consistently describes Republican-backed election laws as restrictive. Many reports highlight how the proposed laws would ban ballot drop-boxes and absentee ballots in states where Biden won, and in some cases frame those efforts as attempts to suppress the votes of Democrats and racial minorities. Reports from right-rated sources frame Republican proposals for new voting laws as being aimed at election security. Some highlight how a large majority of Americans say they support voter ID and contrast that data with Democrats' opposition to requiring voter ID, framing that contradiction as an example of Democrats being out of touch with public opinion.

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