Thousands of enthusiastic Arizona grassroots activists will soon be on the streets gathering signatures to put a sweeping Voting Rights Initiative on the 2022 ballot which will push back on phony audits, prevent theft of electoral votes and protect the rights of Native Americans to participate in Democracy.
While voting rights remains stuck in Congress, the Arizona Constitution allows citizens to use Direct Democracy to create the election laws they want. The Republican-controlled Legislature cannot reverse laws created directly by the people.
The Initiative, which has been filed with the Secretary of State, established automatic voter registration for people seeking drivers’ licenses, or government IDs, and also for high school students who are turning 18. It provides for election-day registration and a host of long-sought improvements in voting procedures.
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If you have ideas about this campaign or would like to volunteer, please let us know at https://secure.everyaction.com/eYVHBAu8GkebyK9grQc_JQ2
A number of provisions are particularly important to Arizona’s 21 Tribes. In addition to the same-day registration, it requires consultation with Tribes on placing polling locations on Reservations. People who receive mail ballots will be allowed to give them to neighbors to turn in. This is important for isolated rural communities because current law can require each voter to drive separately to the county seat which can be more than 100 miles away. It also allows Tribal members, and others, to vote at any polling location in their county rather than having to seek out an assigned location.
Another long-sought provision counts ballots post-marked on election day rather than requiring them to be delivered by election day. This is important for the Navajo Nation where mail ballots often have to go down to Albuquerque, over to Phoenix and back to the county seats in northeast Arizona before they can be counted.
The Initiative slaps back at the Cyber Ninjas and others running phony audits. Under the Initiative, recounts and election contests can only be conducted under the supervision of the courts as provided by law. It will be a felony to give ballots to Cyber Ninjas or other unqualified individuals and would be a felony for them to have ballots in their possession. The Initiative makes it very clear that Arizona’s 11 Electoral Votes go to the candidates for president and vice president who win the election and prohibits scheming by the Legislature to do otherwise.
The volunteer effort for the Initiative is being coordinated by Arizona Deserves Better, a non-profit Arizona committee. There will also be a number of other organizations involved in circulating petitions, but we will let them make their own announcements.
The Initiative also expands early voting; restores the Permanent Early Voting List; allows election officials to receive non-profit grants for specific purposes; prohibits the Legislature from creating new restrictions on voting, and expands rights and services for disabled voters. Other sections limit political contributions, crack down on lobbyists and provide more public funding for Clean Election candidates.
If you would like to contribute to the initiative campaign, please give at https://secure.actblue.com/donate/azvoters#basics
We want to thank all the experts, lawyers, advocates, activists and others who helped put this together and will help us get on the ballot in November and win back voting rights for the people of Arizona.