CEOs and executives of several major companies, including Coca-Cola, Delta, Microsoft and Citibank, have criticized Georgia’s new sweeping election bill.
Coca-Cola CEO James Quincey said Wednesday afternoon on CNBC that the bill is “unacceptable.” His statement comes after Coca-Cola faced a boycott for not opposing the new law. (RELATED: Georgia’s New Voting Law — Myths And Facts)
“It is a step backwards and it does not promote principles we have stood for in Georgia around broad access to voting, around voter convenience, about ensuring election integrity – this is frankly just a step backwards,” he said. “We have said for many decades we promote within Georgia better society and better environment and this is a step backwards and our position remains the same. This legislation is wrong.”
Quincey then said that his company has always been opposed to the election bill but handled many of their disagreements in private. He added that the bill will impact Coca-Cola’s political donations. (RELATED: Sen. Raphael Warnock Avoids Saying Whether Boycotts Of His State Should Be ‘On The Table’ In Response To Election Law)
Delta CEO Ed Bastian also came out against the legislation. In a memo to employees sent Wednesday morning, Bastian said that the law is “unacceptable and does not match Delta’s values,” according to NBC News.
Bastian wrote in the memo that after discussions with members of the black community and taking time to fully understand the bill, “it’s evident that the bill includes provisions that will make it harder for many underrepresented voters, particularly Black voters, to exercise their constitutional right to elect their representatives. That is wrong.”
Microsoft President Brad Smith put out a statement on the company’s blog titled: “Why we are concerned about Georgia’s new election law.”
The company claimed in its Wednesday blog post that the election bill unfairly limits people from being able to vote. Reductions in voter drop boxes, restrictions on absentee ballots and restrictions on provisional ballots are a few of the things that Microsoft said they are concerned about.
Microsoft said that they are still concerned about the bill despite the fact that “some recent criticisms of Georgia’s legislation have proven inaccurate.”
“A healthy community requires that everyone have the right to vote conveniently, safely, and securely,” Microsoft said. “This new law falls short of the mark, and we should work together to press the Georgia legislature to change it.”
Executives at Citibank also publically condemned the law. Citi’s Chief Financial Officer Mark Mason said in a LinkedIn post that he was “appalled” by the legislation. (RELATED: Lindsey Graham Bashes Biden Criticism Of Georgia Voting Law)
“I see it as a disgrace that our country’s efforts to keep Black Americans from engaging fully in our Constitutional right to vote continue to this day,” Mason wrote.
“The right to vote is the foundation of American democracy,” said Edward Skyler, Citi’s Head of Global Public Affairs. “We strongly oppose efforts to undermine the ability of Americans to avail themselves of this fundamental right.
Republican Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp signed S.B. 202 into law Thursday. The bill strengthens voter ID requirements, restricts absentee ballots, limit early voting during runoff elections and prevents “line-warming,” or volunteers handing out snacks or refreshments to people waiting in line to vote.
Former President Donald Trump applauded the bill, saying that it was “too bad these changes could not have been done sooner.”