Georgia Adds Nearly Quarter-Million Black, Latino Registered Voters Since 2016

The state of Georgia recorded an increase of 130,000 Black registered voters and added 95,000 Latino voters between October 2016 and October 2020, according to the most recent election data.

Overall more than half a million new registered voters have been added to Georgia's voter rolls over the past four years, according to data from the elections division of the Georgia secretary of state's office. The 25 percent increase in Black voters from 2016 was followed by an essential tie between Latino and White voters, who each added about 95,000 new voters, or about 18 percent apiece. About 63,000 Asian-American voters were also newly registered.

After President-elect Joe Biden's slim win over President Donald Trump in Georgia, the state's newly registered voters will have their turnout tested once again during the January 5 Senate runoff election.

As the Pew Research Center noted in a Monday analysis, Georgia's increasingly diverse registered voters will be key to the runoffs pitting Republicans David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler against Democrats Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock, respectively.

Overall, fewer than half (46 percent) of the newly registered voters identified themselves as white. Black voters still compose about one-third of the state's registered voters, showing little change from 2008. But Latino and Asian voters quadrupled and tripled, respectively, their presence among Georgia registered voters since 2008, when both groups only made up about 1 percent of the state's voter rolls.

The 520,000-person increase in registered voters between the two presidential election cycles includes 72,000 people (14 percent) who declined to provide their racial or ethnic background. There are additionally 56,000 newly registered voters who identify with other racial groups.

Women make up a majority of Georgia voters (53 percent), with the Pew authors noting that Black women are registered in much larger numbers than Black men. Former Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams has largely been credited with helping register and turn out Black votes for Biden in the November election. Several grassroots "get out the vote" campaigns across the state called attention to the disproportionate impact that voter purges, polling-location closures and registration blocks were having on potential Black voters.

The Brookings Institution recently highlighted how immigration reform became a large policy topic ahead of the 2020 presidential election, influencing many voting campaigns within Hispanic communities.

The Atlanta metropolitan area alone added 301,000 new registered voters over the past four years. This area now composes a 54 percent majority of the state's overall registered voters. The Atlanta region had a 70 percent turnout rate during last month's presidential election, which Pew noted was essential to Biden's victory over Trump.

Newsweek reached out to the Georgia secretary of state's office for any additional information about the state's voter rolls.

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Supporters cheer for Vice President-elect Kamala Harris as she speaks in support of Georgia Democratic Senate candidates Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff on December 21 in Columbus, Georgia. JESSICA MCGOWAN / Stringer/Getty Images