MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough refuted the claim that Georgia’s new elections law is “Jim Crow 2.0” during Monday’s broadcast of “Morning Joe.”
Scarborough said “we need to be precise in our criticism” of the law, before breaking down how actual Jim Crow-era voting rules negatively impacted black voters. (RELATED: Psaki Doubles Down On Biden’s ‘Four Pinocchio’ Claim That Georgia Election Bill Ends Voting Hours Early)
Scarborough began by noting that critics of Georgia’s new law have likened it to “Jim Crow-era voting rules.” He then played a video clip of President Joe Biden criticizing the law.
“I’m convinced that we’ll be able to stop this because it is the most pernicious thing — this makes Jim Crow look like Jim Eagle,” Biden said in the video. “This is gigantic, what they’re trying to do, and it cannot be sustained. I’m going to do everything in my power, along with my friends in the House and the Senate, to keep that from becoming the law.”
“I understand the reaction to what happened on January 6. I understand the skepticism on why Georgia would change voting laws, and change voting laws when, actually, there was no widespread voter fraud just a month or two ago. But we need to be precise in our criticism,” Scarborough said after the video.
Scarborough then ran through “what Jim Crow-era voting looked like in Georgia.” He described how the state established a poll tax in 1871, added a requirement that citizens had to pay any owed back taxes before they could vote, added a literacy test for voters in 1907, and then stated that the Georgia Democratic Party “explicitly” blocked non-white voters from participating in primaries. He also said it was estimated that the back taxes requirement cut the black turnout in the state in half.
“It does seem we’re quite a way from Jim Crow 2.0,” he concluded.
Democrats have heavily criticized the new law, describing it as a voter suppression tactic against minority voters. Republican legislators in Georgia, as well as Republican Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp, have pushed back on the criticism, calling it a “false narrative,” and saying, “We will continue to stand up for secure, accessible, fair elections.”