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Arizona senator proposing new bill to ban mail-in ballot elections

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Republican Sen. Wendy Rogers is proposing to cost taxpayers more money and potentially suppress voter turnout by banning cities, towns and school boards from holding all mail-in ballot elections.

Local government entities have decided to run many of its low turn-out and off-cycle elections this way because it's cheaper to send ballots to voters than open and staff polling stations and voting cites.

Rogers, the main sponsor of SB1133, is a supporter of former President Donald Trump, who has claimed without evidence that mail-in voting leads to election fraud.

Stephen Richer, the Maricopa County Recorder, said he doesn't see a reason to change state law that gives local governments the option on how they want to run an election.

"My perspective on election legislation generally is that it should identify and solve real problems, not just something we have general, vague concerns about, and I'm unaware of any such real problem," he said Tuesday.

Last year, Richer said there were three mail-in voting elections in Maricopa County with no problems. He added that there is no evidence that mail-in voting increases the risk for fraud.

Chris Kotterman warned that Rogers' legislative proposal would force school boards to pay more for their elections because of the added costs of setting up physical voting sites.

He also worries that the normally low turnout elections could see fewer voters because they won't automatically get their ballot in the mail.

"I think it will also hurt participation because if you do a mail-in election, then every voter in the district gets a ballot, and so they have the opportunity to vote," Kotterman said.
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Friday, 19 April 2024

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