SB 1241 singles out voters for criminal scrutiny and imposes burdensome and unnecessary new requirements on county elections officials
ATLANTA — Yesterday, a coalition of Arizona community organizations and voting rights groups issued a joint statement denouncing the latest amendments made to SB 1241, authored by Republican state Sen. Kelly Townsend. The bill now awaits a vote in both the state House and Senate.
The amended bill singles out voters for criminal scrutiny by requiring counties to send ballots that have mismatched signatures to the state Attorney General for potential investigation. The bill also imposes burdensome and unnecessary new requirements on county elections officials by requiring counties to provide receipts to voters upon request, either printed by the tabulation machine or written out by a poll worker, which the groups say could lead to serious delays and long lines at the polls—especially since there is no tabulation machine on the market that currently does this.
SB 1241 represents yet another blatant attack on voters as part of the Republican Party’s capitulation to conspiracy theorists and anti-democratic impulses. So far in 2021, anti-voter Republican state legislators have introduced more than 400 bills attacking the freedom to vote.
Read the full statement here.
- “Elderly voters and voters with disabilities are more likely to be affected by signature mismatches, as are voters whose first language is not English and young voters (between the ages of 18 and 25) whose signature is still developing. Signature mismatches are not a crime.”
- “This represents a costly and unnecessary additional burden on county elections officials and poll workers, and is likely to lead to serious delays and additional lines at polling places.”
- “SB1241 poses a real threat to Arizona’s ability to conduct free and fair elections going forward.”
- “Arizonans should be able to vote and make our voices heard without being subject to harassment, intimidation and criminal scrutiny. And county elections officials should be able to do their jobs without facing absurd, unnecessary mandates from the state legislature.”
- “This bill is an embarrassment and a serious blow to democracy.”