Friday, March 20, 2015

Voter suppression back in bits and pieces

Remember the odious provisions in HB2305 last year? They're baaaaack.

Here is a summary from AZBlueMeanie at B4AZ (and more).

The strike everything amendment scheduled to be attached to SB1340 would make it a felony for volunteers from a political committee to collect mail-in ballots from voters and deliver them to elections officials, a tactic Latino get-out-the-vote groups have successfully used to increase voter turnout in mostly minority neighborhoods.

Following is from the summary of the amendment at azleg.gov.

1. Prohibits a person from collecting, possessing, or returning a voted early ballot if the person is any of the following:

a. A paid or volunteer worker for any political committee, other than a candidate or candidate’s spouse.

b. A paid or volunteer worker who acts at the behest of any other organization that is not a political committee.

i. Stipulates that this prohibition does not apply to a person who collects or returns an early ballot and who is acting without direction from a political committee or organization.

ii. Prescribes a Class 5 felony for knowingly violating this section.

Remember how (now SoS) Michele Reagan abandoned 2305? That was before she now supports the felony provision of SB1340.

Matt Roberts, Reagan’s spokesman, said she now supports the strike everything amendment.

Rep. Heather Carter crossed party lines and voted in committee against the amendment. BlueMeanie continues:

UPDATE: The vote on the Striker to SB 1340 FAILED on a 3-3 tie vote today. Republican Heather Carter joined with Democrats Ken Clark and Jonathan Larkin to defeat the bill. Be sure to thank Heather Carter for standing up to do the right thing.

Unfortunately, this is the kind of bill that will get attached to another bill in the dying days of the session — it is never over until sine die. You have to watch these guys like a hawk.

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