GOP Controlled Legislatures are Considering 165 Bills to Make Voting More Difficult
If you don't like the outcome change the rules. After Donald Trump's loss in November and his baseless and often cringe-worthy voter fraud conspiracy theories, it was inevitable that Republicans would cook-up new ways to make voting more difficult. They have been doing it for decades, with mixed success, but Trump's voter fraud fantasies have taken it to an entirely new level. We have discussed the issue a number of times:
Illuminate: "During his years in office, and especially after his defeat by Joe Biden, Donald Trump and members of his administration promoted the myth that there is rampant voter fraud in the United States. Ironically, Trump's baseless voter fraud witch hunt after the 2020 election is proving once and for all that voter fraud has always been a Republican conspiracy theory. Even with every Republican activist in America combing the results for fraud, they found few examples of illegal activity. It was a remarkably free and fair election, more so than anyone could have imagined. In fact, Election officials of both parties seem a bit surprised by how few irregularities were found."
The nonpartisan Brennan Center for Justice at NYU Law keeps tabs on voting rights legislation and they noted on Monday that most of the states with Republican run legislatures are now considering bills to make it more difficult to register and vote. Their argument, of course, is that they want to reduce voter fraud even if they can't really prove that it exists.
Brennan Center: "Thus far this year, thirty-three states have introduced, prefiled, or carried over 165 bills to restrict voting access. These proposals primarily seek to: (1) limit mail voting access; (2) impose stricter voter ID requirements; (3) slash voter registration opportunities; and (4) enable more aggressive voter roll purges. These bills are an unmistakable response to the unfounded and dangerous lies about fraud that followed the 2020 election."
Arizona leads with 19 proposals, Pennsylvania has 14, and Georgia 11. Trump lost all three states and many Republicans believe that wider access to early and mail-in voting was a contributing factor. Each of the states had higher turn-out rates than in previous elections and the GOP doesn't view that as a positive development. So, they believe their success in the future depends on limiting access to the polls.
New York Times Editorial Board: "It’s become an accepted truth of modern politics that Republican electoral prospects go up as the number of voters goes down. Conservatives have known this for a long time, which helps explain their intensifying efforts to make it harder to vote, or to eliminate large numbers of people from political representation entirely."
Arizona state representative Athena Salman, a Democrat from Tempe who sits on that state's House Government and Elections Committee, summed it up like this: Republicans are "trying to stop eligible voters from voting because they don’t like the decisions voters are making."
By: Don Lam & Curated Content