WASHINGTON, D.C. — Republicans are targeting two Democratic lawmakers for distributing snacks to voters in line at the polls last year. The legislators, state Reps. Roger Bruce and Matthew Wilson, handed out potato chips and pizza to voters in line, a common practice seen across many well-publicized instances from volunteers and companies last election when voters across Georgia experienced excessive wait times in extreme weather in order to cast their ballots. Neither lawmaker asked for votes in exchange for food, but state Republicans are now investigating them, alleging their snack distribution was illegal gift-giving.
Republicans passed a new law after the 2020 election that explicitly banned the distribution of food and water to voters in line, which was immediately challenged in court by many voting rights groups. Rep. Bruce pointed out that their passage of this law clearly indicates the practice was not illegal before, including in his case. Whether food or drink count as political gifts has always been subject to interpretation in Georgia, and no significant challenges to the practice have ever been brought before.