Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger said the state is prepared to fight the Justice Department's lawsuit against its election law up to the United States Supreme Court and is "confident" it will "prevail" after the state sought to dismiss the case altogether this week.
Georgia filed a motion seeking a full dismissal of what it calls the DOJ's "politicized intrusion into the State of Georgia’s constitutional authority to regulate the ‘time, place and manner’ of its elections," while arguing that the measures included in the state’s new election law that the DOJ characterizes as "discriminatory" or "racist" are law in other traditionally blue states.
"The complaint rests on political posturing rather than a serious legal challenge to SB202," the filing states, adding that it "must be dismissed."
During an exclusive interview with Fox News after the filing, Raffensperger called the Justice Department’s lawsuit a "political propaganda piece."
"This law that we passed will be upheld, and I have high confidence the judge will dismiss the lawsuit," Raffensperger said. "But we are prepared to take this all the way to the Supreme Court, and we will prevail at the end of the day."
The Justice Department alleges that the law violates the Voting Rights Act.
Georgia’s new law requires voter ID for absentee voting rather than relying on signature matching for verification; limits ballot drop boxes to one per county or one per 100,000 voters; and expands early voting days and standardized early voting hours to a minimum of 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and a maximum of 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. The legislation also barred outside groups from passing out food and water to those in line, which Republicans say can be used as a method to illegally influence people waiting to vote.
The law also handed more election authority to the GOP-controlled state legislature. It states that the General Assembly is to select the chair of the state elections board, rather than the board being chaired by the Georgia secretary of state. It also shortens runoffs from nine weeks to four.
The state election board can also now investigate county election boards and has the power to suspend county election superintendents – though the board can only suspend four at a time.
The provisions the DOJ are targeting include a ban on government entities handing out unsolicited absentee ballots; fines on civic groups, places of worship and advocacy organizations for distributing follow-up absentee ballots; and shortening absentee ballot deadlines to 11 days before Election Day.
"When running for election, and as I continue to say every time, only American citizens should be voting in our elections," Raffensperger said, defending the I.D. requirement at voting places. "We are going to fight them and we are going to win to secure elections in Georgia."
Raffensperger told Fox News he is committed to making sure the people voting in Georgia are at least 18 years of age, "not under felony convictions" and American citizens.
"After that, we want people to enjoy their privilege and franchise to vote," he said.
Raffensperger again defended Georgia’s election law as "common-sense election reform."
"People know they have a secretary of state that is not playing political gamesmanship," he said. "People are looking for integrity up and down the line, and that is what we’re going to continue to support here in Georgia."
Raffensperger fell under former President Trump’s ire in the weeks following the 2020 presidential election when Trump urged him to "find" enough votes to reverse the state’s results and deliver him a victory.
"It is one thing when campaigns try to weaponize elections with lies and disinformation," Raffensperger said. "But when the Justice Department weaponizes lies and disinformation about our election laws, it is truly an effort to compensate for a failed federal election takeover."
"It is a dangerous road the Justice Department is going down," he said. "The federal government should never use the court system to attack commonsense election efforts like we have here in Georgia."
The Justice Department did not immediately respond to Fox News’ request for comment on Georgia’s filing to dismiss the suit.