The presidential election is coming up fast, and it’s crucial that our voting process remains accurate and reliable. Citizens have to trust that the system works properly.
This will prove to be more of a challenge in 2020, however, as the pandemic has significantly changed the election environment. Mail-in balloting will be more important than ever.
Considering this, the state of Michigan has passed two bills that seek to protect election integrity.
One of the bill’s sponsors, Republican Sen. Kevin Daley, said “people need to have confidence that their elections are being conducted honestly, and that they can trust the results.”
That’s why they want to make any voter fraud a very serious thing.
In a bipartisan vote on Wednesday, the state Senate decided to issue a more severe punishment to those who tamper with absentee ballots.
From Fox News:
Michigan’s state Senate passed two bills in a bipartisan vote Wednesday that would make it a felony to request a mail-in ballot under another person’s name or to fill out an application for multiple ballots.
The Republican-led Senate approved the bills easily, by a count of 32-6.
Michigan is currently sending out mail-in ballot applications to all registered voters for the presidential election.
By the end of September, a whopping 2.5 million voters had requested their ballot. That’s 32 percent of all registered voters in the state.
Now – provided the bills pass – if any of them attempt to provide false information, or indulge in ballot harvesting, they’ll face a felony charge.
And as Daley told MLive:
I think the strong support shows that both Republicans and Democrats can agree that securing our elections is important.
It’s amazing what we can do when we work together. We should all be able to trust the outcome of elections – win or lose.
Most Democrats claim there’s very little evidence to support the claim that mail-in voting is rife with fraud. On the flip side, many on the other side of the aisle are concerned.
President Donald Trump continues to voice his displeasure with the mail-in balloting system. It’s also interesting to note that polling indicates Democrats are more likely to vote by mail, while more Republicans intend to vote in person.
All this being said, the bills face one final hurdle:
Governor Gretchen Whitmer hasn’t confirmed that she’ll sign the legislation. Whitmer, a Democrat, has often come under fire from right-wing politicians for her staunchly liberal views.
But if she does sign the bills, the new rule should (hopefully) be a deterrent for voters who want to abuse the system.
- The Michigan Senate just passed two mail-in voting bills. They would turn absentee ballot tampering into a felony.
- State Republicans claim it’s necessary in order to secure elections, and people need to be able to “trust the results.”
- Gov. Gretchen Whitmer hasn’t said if she’d sign the legislation.
Source: Fox News