The fight over the 2020 election continues in Arizona, where state lawmakers this year filed the third-highest number of voting restriction bills in the nation, according to a national survey. Four of the 23 voting restriction bills are given a shot at passing, while none of the 15 that would expand voting access is still alive at the Legislature winds down. /Photo courtesy Maricopa County Elections Department
By Ryan Knappenberger | Cronkite News
Arizona lawmakers, who began the year with one of the highest number of voting restriction bills in the nation, are winding down a legislative session in which it appears only a few of those bills will survive.
But that doesn’t mean voting rights activists are happy.
Ryan Snow, associate counsel for the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, called it a “death by a million cuts.”
“Officials … have taken to erecting a litany of barriers that any one of which might sound on its face that it’s not that big of a deal,” Snow said. “But when you take them together, it creates a restrictive process that disproportionately affects voters of color, low-wealth voters, young voters and other politically disabled voters.”
Supporters of the bills disagree and say that the state – coming off the divisive 2020 election and in the midst of a contentious audit of Maricopa County’s returns – needs to restore faith in the election process and “ensure Arizona’s elections are fair and transparent.”
Arizona Republican lawmakers introduced the third-highest number of voting restriction bills this year, according to the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University, which said the state’s 23 bills trailed only Texas, with 49, and Georgia, with 25. Nationwide, 361 such bills were introduced, it said.