The ACLU is challenging a proposed measure that would close seven of the nine polling places in predominately black precincts in a Georgia county, ahead of mid-term elections.
The closure would account for 75 percent of the polling places in Randolph County, including Cuthbert Middle School where nearly 97 percent of voters are black, according to the American Civil Liberties Union of Georgia, the NY Times reports.
“There is strong evidence that this was done with intent to make it harder for African Americans,” ACLU of Georgia attorney Sean Young told the Times.
The Randolph County elections board is reportedly scheduled to meet Thursday to discuss closing the polling places.
According to the latest census figures, Randolph County’s population is more than 61 percent of black, double the statewide percentage, the NY Times reports.
Black voters would be heavily affected, the ACLU claims, especially those with limited access to transportation to get to another polling place if their closest precinct is closed.
“If you don’t have a car and you want to vote in-person, you have to walk three-and-a-half hours,” Young said.
The ACLU says there is no public transportation in the rural county and people could have to travel an additional 10 miles to vote.
With no car or bus to reach a different polling location, this predominantly black, Democratic county will not be able to fairly vote, ACLU of Georgia executive director Andrea Young said to the Times.
These measures could have a significant impact on turnout for the Georgia governor election which pits African-American Democratic candidate Stacey Abrams against Trump-endorsed Republican candidate Brian Kemp.
If elected in November, Abrams could make history as the United States first female African-American governor.