SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) – A federal judge has ordered an extension of the voter registration deadline for one county in coastal Georgia after Hurricane Matthew disrupted the final sign-up days for new voters.
U.S. District Court Judge William T. Moore Jr. ruled Friday that voters in Savannah and surrounding Chatham County must be allowed to register through next Tuesday.
The Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law sought an emergency extension after hurricane evacuations caused the Chatham County elections board to close its offices for a six-day period that included Tuesday, the statewide deadline to register.
Gov. Nathan Deal declined to give new voters more time to sign up. Attorneys for the state argued election officials are focused on early voting, which starts Monday, and would be unfairly burdened by registering additional voters.