Politics

Election Security Bills Pushed by Multiple GOP State Legislatures after Georgia Blowback

Written by Joey Brasil

As Democrats continue to express outrage over increased voting security measures in states such as Georgia, legislatures in other states are following the assertion by Republicans for better voting security. 

The Democrats want election protocols to be under the jurisdiction of the federal government. However, the states have had the power to decide how elections operate within their states and implement necessary security measures for voting for centuries.

“Efforts have been made to suppress the vote. Efforts have been made to introduce bills that would suppress the vote,” per Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn towards GOP-backed bills on the state level. “A dozen states including Arizona, Georgia and Pennsylvania, have introduced legislation to limit access to vote by mail.” 

Heritage Action, a conservative policy advocation group, invested more than $10 million to support the implementation of voter security laws in many swing states. 

“States across the nation are working to secure their elections and restore voter trust. Grassroots activists and state lawmakers alike are hard at work making it easy to vote and hard to cheat,” said Heritage Action Executive Director Jessica Anderson. “I am thrilled to see so many states advancing laws that will inspire confidence in our elections, the bedrock of our democracy.”

In Texas, there are two bills that were created to address the need for tightening voting rules. S.B. 7 bans the mailing of unsolicited mail ballots and drive-through voting. It also reveals that poll watchers are “entitled to sit or stand near enough to see and hear the activity.” While it still needs a full vote, H.B. 6 would get rid of ‘vote harvesting services’ and get deceased voters removed from rolls. 

However, in Arizona, many bills are being advanced that are more limited. One, in particular, was passed in order to ban government institutions from using private money for elections. On top of that, another bill requires the health department to give the secretary of state information about deaths to remove dead voters from voter lists. 

Other states, such as Florida, have taken a different approach by changing individual Congressional bills from the House and Senate. HB 7041 bans ballot-harvesting and allows drop-off places for votes, but only under certain security measures. In contrast, Michigan cannot pass the same legislation due to their Democratic Governor Gretchen Whitmer. As they work on a ballot initiative, they hope to follow in the footsteps of Florida.

Other states such as Wisconsin, Tennessee, and Iowa have also made efforts to ban private money in elections. As an important problem to address, unsolicited mail ballots are paramount as well for Republicans in these states.