The first US voters generally were white male landowners. Over time, the right to vote has become more universal for US adult citizens.
Each state determines its voting rules and procedures, with some rights guaranteed by the federal government. I first learned about federal oversight through the desegregation of public schools. After eight years in all white schools, my 9th grade class was integrated in the fall of 1965 (eleven years after Brown v. Board of Education). Racial barriers to voting fell more rapidly, beginning with the 1965 Voting Rights Act.
A recent law passed by the Georgia legislature has put voting rights back in the national spotlight. People have been quick to take sides. Corporations and Major League Baseball have weighed in. The issues are more nuanced than the headlines indicate. Stacey Abrams’ responses to Senator John Kennedy provided cool-headed clarity around some of those nuances.
In the article referenced below, Stephen Fowler, a very respected reporter for Georgia Public Broadcasting, explained the lengthy Georgia law in ordinary language. His objective analysis goes beyond the partisan headlines.