Faith leaders file suit to block implementation of Georgia election law

Calling Georgia's new voter law unjust, undemocratic, and unconstitutional, a coalition of voting rights groups, faith leaders and churches have filed suit against Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger and members of the Georgia State Election Board.

Exousia Lighthouse International Christian Ministries Bishop Carl McRae blasted proponents of Senate Bill 202.

"They are glaringly and boldly making clear their intentions to thwart the votes of certain people and they are doing it in plain view of the entire world," said Bishop McRae.

Critics said SB 202 is a discriminatory law intentionally aimed at reducing access to the ballot box and criminalizing voting, on Tuesday, the Advancement Project National Office filed the lawsuit on the group's behalf.

Judith Browne Dianis, Executive Director with the Advancement Project National Office said, "The voter suppression law passed is immoral, amoral, and unconstitutional, and our litigation will seek to block implementation."

They claim the controversial legislation targets Black and brown communities where there was record voter turnout in the 2020 election.

Plaintiffs also maintain that the law's criminalization of voter assistance activities, like providing food and water to voters in line at the polls, violates the First Amendment rights of faith communities and Georgians across the state.

"We joined this lawsuit because the bill's target is clear, to create barriers," said Faith in Action's Richard Morales. "A move to silence voters of faith and decrease the power of black and brown voters."

Last week, faith leaders called for a national boycott against The Home Depot as part of the group's accountability campaign to pressure Georgia businesses to condemn the new law. They said if the law stands it will serve as a model for other states.

"We are seeing mirror bills moving through Florida, Texas, and Arizona," Dianis said. "We believe if Senate Bill 202 stands other states will follow. This will be the model for voter suppression."

A spokesman with the Secretary of State's Office responded to the filing in a written statement saying, "Georgia’s new election law provides important safeguards that will protect the votes of all Georgians. I’m confident the courts will agree."

WATCH: FOX 5 Atlanta live news coverage


Sign up for FOX 5 email alerts

Download the FOX 5 Atlanta app for breaking news and weather alerts.