The Texas businesses, calling themselves Fair Elections Texas, used notably careful language in their statement, declaring that elections should be “convenient, transparent and secure,” a nod to Republicans’ insistence that their agenda is about preventing fraud and shoring up voter confidence in election results.
At the same time, the group called on “all elected leaders” to “make democracy more accessible” and said they “oppose any changes that would restrict eligible voters’ access to the ballot.”
Todd Coerver, CEO of the Texas-based fast food chain P-Terry’s Burger Stand, said the “groundswell” of legislation aimed at changing voting laws across the U.S. made it easy for the company to sign onto the letter.
Making voting easier is part of P-Terry’s culture, Coerver said, adding that during the November election, restaurants organized ride-sharing so the company’s more than 900 mostly minority employees could get to the ballot box. And they could use company time to vote.
“For us this was not necessarily a political statement,” Coerver said. “We see it as less of a political issue and more as a human rights initiative.”
Georgia became a national flashpoint over election procedures when it became the first state to adopt an overhaul. Among the key provisions, the state now will require voter identification to apply for and then cast absentee ballots, replacing a signature match program. Georgia officials also effectively limited ballot drop boxes in metro-area counties when compared with the 2020 numbers.