The Atlanta Hawks have committed their arena as an early voting site for Georgia's upcoming elections. The basketball team is challenging others in the NBA to become civically involved ahead of November.
The 700,000-square-foot arena will allow voters to spread out. The arena's staff will serve as poll workers and the team's players will encourage local residents to vote via social media.
lead to accusations of voter suppression and investigations by both Democrats and Republicans.State Farm Arena will be one of 19 locations in Fulton County open during the three-week early voting period ahead of the state's Aug. 11 runoff, and will also be open for early voting during the November general election.
The 700,000-square-foot facility holds 16,000 people for basketball games and up to 21,000 for concerts but will be configured to hold hundreds of ballot-marking devices spaced throughout the arena floor, and officials promised social-distancing protocols would be followed to keep voters safe.
During last week's primary elections in Kentucky, polling places in the state's biggest cities werein arenas and convention centers that mostly operated smoothly, allowing voters enough space to keep a distance from others.Hawks Coach Lloyd Pierce, a Black man who has been
outspoken on social justice issuesand is chair of the NBA's racial justice committee, said he would urge his fellow coaches and teams to open up their doors to the community and promote participation in the electoral process."This will be a challenge to 29 other coaches in our league," he said."We want to get 30 cities in our country being able to take part of everyone's right, which is the right to vote."
The Hawks' announcement comes as political activism is sweeping the worlds of sports and entertainment.Earlier this month, Los Angeles Lakers star player LeBron Jamestold The New York Timesthat he is starting a voting rights-focused group with other prominent Black athletes and entertainers.
"[W]e feel like we're getting some ears and some attention, and this is the time for us to finally make a difference," James told the newspaper.The Hawks' players will also feature in social media advertisements and other initiatives to encourage Fulton County residents to take advantage of early voting options and avoid longer lines on Election Day.
Hawks officials also said the facility's practice court and media dining room would be turned into the county's hub for processing and tabulating absentee ballots on election night in November.A record 1.1 million Georgians voted absentee in the June 9 primary election and the secretary of state's office is anticipating as many as 2.5 million will vote that way in the general election.
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Kemp frantically trying to find fault... Yes! Thank you ATLHawks ! I think it's a great idea. Go Hawks. People finally have a place to vote. A place of safety, hope that their vote will count and that they matter. You mean State Farm arena? It is owned by the Atlanta Fulton County Recreation Authority. This is great news....The question is, will the voting machines work?
Florida sports franchises step up! MLB NBA NFL I just became a NASCAR fan now I love the nba too?!? WHO EVEN AM I ANYMORE?! This is the greatest 'sports' story I've heard in years. Well done ATLHawks, well done!!! I’m sure the hypocrite gop will do something to stop fair voting! Every city in the United States should do this!!! Better Together ✊🏿✊🏽✊🏼✊🏻✊🏽
Great move, Hawks and NBA!! 👍 Alyssa_Milano Love it. No mail in voting. Make them use ID’s as well If they keep not sticking to basketball, I’m going to start watching the NBA again. I love this. Lots of parking and transit to the arena. Could easily imagine people going to vote early just to get inside and see the arena. MANY people can never afford a ticket so it would be a cool experience.
NerdPyle this! this!!!! Suns AZCardinals Dbacks No need for the Blazers Moda Center to do this, because Oregon VOTES BY MAIL (just like realDonaldTrump and his cronies). Hey chicagobulls Alyssa_Milano MAIL-IN VOTER FRAUD: New Jersey Dems CHARGED Over Possession Of Ballots - up to ten years in prison.
Alyssa_Milano Defund NPR Mailedlt oregon Alyssa_Milano I find Hawks offensive please change your name Alyssa_Milano Trump's not going to like that. Alyssa_Milano This sounds really smart and wonderful. How to support it? Alyssa_Milano Wow this really worked for Hillary. NOT. MAGA 🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸
What's the over-under at on how many broken voting machines Alyssa_Milano Hopefully all other teams fall in line Alyssa_Milano Lol Alyssa_Milano How precious! TeeHee! 🤗 This is a game changer! All sports teams in various leagues should follow suit! Bravo 👏 BLM is a terrorist organization!!!
Hawks approve turning arena into massive Atlanta elections polling placeLast election saw people waiting more than four hours to vote in Atlanta, this can help change that. WOW!!!
Atlanta Hawks to turn arena into a giant voting centerThe Atlanta Hawks announced that their stadium, State Farm Arena, would become Georgia's largest-ever voting center. The basketball team also challenged other franchises to follow suit before the presidential election. EXCELLENT NEWS FROM ATLANTA. what a great idea
Atlanta Hawks to transform State Farm Arena into massive voting station for 2020 electionsOn Tuesday, the Hawks and Fulton County announced that State Farm Arena will become a polling place to create Georgia's largest-ever voting precinct. I’m so grateful to lara_binary_TRD if it wasn’t for you, I would still be in debt. Earn over $16,000 on her trading platform In person voting can be done safely in the time of COVID. 'The largest ever voting precinct' doesn't sound like a good idea in 2020. Can't we wait for 2022 to try this? Yes!
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