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EDITORIAL: Black voters thrilled with ‘Jim Crow 2.0’

African American voters overwhelmingly praised the election system President Joe Biden once deemed “Jim Crow in the 21st century.” Don’t expect apologies from those who attempted to use racial demagoguery for electoral gain.

Recently, the University of Georgia’s School of Public &International Affairs released a survey on November’s election. It polled more than 1,200 Georgia voters. One question focused on how voters rated their overall experience. Zero percent of Black respondents rated their experience as poor. An overwhelming 72.6 percent said it was excellent. Another 23.6 percent said it was good. Just 3.3 percent said it was fair. These numbers were virtually identical with white voters.

This is the opposite of what progressives predicted after Georgia passed an election integrity bill in 2021. The law strengthened ID requirements for absentee ballots and created new accountability for local election officials. It imposed rules regarding ballot drop boxes and shortened the time voters had to request absentee ballots. It prevented non-poll workers from offering food and beverages to those waiting in line to vote. It expanded early voting in many counties.

Mr. Biden labeled it “Jim Crow 2.0” and an “atrocity.” He even said the Justice Department was looking at the legislation. Stacey Abrams, who at the time was only a once-failed Georgia gubernatorial candidate, labeled it “racist.”

Democrats pressured businesses to show their displeasure. Major League Baseball moved the All-Star game from Atlanta to Denver. (Ironically, early voting started earlier in Georgia than in Colorado last year.) Hordes of major companies attacked the Georgia law. Delta Air Lines CEO Ed Bastian predicted it “will make it harder for many underrepresented voters, particularly Black voters, to exercise their constitutional right to elect their representatives.”

But all the overwrought hysteria has crumbled in the face of reality. Early voting turnout surged, setting records for an off-year election, including for minority voters. The survey reveals widespread satisfaction with the new rules.

The state also reviewed how things went in Atlanta’s Fulton County, which previously had problems with its procedures. Things went much smoother in November, in part because the oversight measures encouraged better performance. Accountability leads to improved outcomes. That’s a lesson worth remembering for other areas of government, such as education.

Ultimately, the voters will decide whether to hold politicians and businesses responsible for making wildly inaccurate claims. They’re unlikely to have the integrity to acknowledge how wrong they were.

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