Watch Martin Luther King III react to Georgia voter suppression bill: “It bodes to moving back to Jim Crow era kind of legislation”

King III: “We are blocking democracy at home. It’s a sad day for Georgia” 

Video file

Citation From the March 25, 2021, edition of CNN's The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer 

PAMELA BROWN (HOST): It's one of many efforts under way across the country to restrict voter access. What impact will this law have on voters in your state of Georgia? 

MARTIN LUTHER KING III (GUEST): Well, first of all, it's a very sad day for this state. It bodes to moving back to Jim Crow era kind of legislation. The impact certainly has the potential to reduce voters, particularly of color, who normally would have -- all voters would have a longer time to vote. 

I think there's something in that legislation that says you can't even bring somebody water. How inhumane can these legislators be?

Starting -- even though the governor didn't vote, he, of course, approved it by signing the legislation. It's not surprising, it's greatly disappointing that our state has gone in this direction. 

What it means is that people are going to have to be more vigilant -- Black people, young people, older people, poor people -- are going to have to be even more vigilant. 

It's unfortunate that this trend is happening all across America and over 40 states across our nation. It used to be a time where if you called someone a racist, they would want to retreat. But now, it seems to be in vogue and alright to be a racist. 

It's a sad day in America, quite frankly. 

BROWN: And you -- you view that bill that he signed as a form of racism. 

KING III: Excuse me? 

BROWN: And so you're saying that you view the bill that he signed as a form of racism? 

KING III: Oh, absolutely. There's no other reason why would you put something in place -- you said, "We had a great election back in January," on January 5th. Of course, last year in November, there were no flaws or anything. 

So, why would you restrict? We're supposed to be expanding the right to vote to make it easier for more people to vote, not restricting the right to vote. It's a travesty, it's tragic. 

And I think voters, maybe this is going to backfire. The hope is that more and more people will vote, because they made it so much more difficult by what they've done, which should be unconstitutional.

And when you think about the fact, we lead the nation and the world in promoting democracy, but we are blocking democracy at home. It's a sad day in Georgia and a sad day for America.