Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Election Bills Moving in AZ Legislature

Posted By on Wed, May 15, 2013 at 2:00 PM

The elections omnibus that bizarrely emerged along with 10 budget bills passed out of the Senate Appropriations on a 3-6 party line vote.

"There's a shocker, people." Sen. Don Shooter, R-Yuma, joked about the divide. Democrats said releasing the elections bill with the budget bills was inappropriate.

SB1493 is a roundup of most of the session's controversial elections bills, which have stalled in the House since passing the Rules Committee in early April. Most notably, the bill would limit who can pick up early ballots and kick people off the Permanent Early Voting List if they don't vote by mail in the two most recent primary and general elections or reaffirm their desire to remain on the list.

Anna Tovar, D-Tolleson, said she thinks the elections problems could easily be revisited later when everyone has cooler heads. Tovar said the bill doesn't solve early ballot problems or people not knowing where to vote.

"I was under the assumption that Permanent Early Voter List meant permanent," Tovar said. "If they did it once they should be voters for life."

Sen. Steve Farley, D-Tucson, posted on his blog The Farley Report that he isn't worried about the bill.

"Thankfully for democracy, I have reason to believe that this package will not make it to the Senate floor. I will, as always, watch carefully just in case I am surprised," Farley wrote. "This is, after all, the season of surprises in the Legislature."

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