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Disenfranchising voters is not ‘election reform’

Vote in a political campaign concept with a graphic element icon of voting as a jigsaw puzzle that is complete representing democratic elections organisation and campaigning for government positions of power between conservatives and liberals.

Arizonans have an election system that is safe, secure, and convenient. Through the hard work of election officials and leaders from both parties, our voting system serves as a national model.  Despite this success, we are now witnessing legislative efforts aimed at not only undoing this carefully crafted system, but actually attempting to suppress the votes of Arizonans. These efforts are misguided and must be defeated. 

And as private-sector business leaders who lead the Public Policy Committee of an organization of CEOs at the helm of hundreds of thousands of employees in Arizona, it is incumbent upon us to speak out against proposals that could interfere with any Arizonan’s right to vote.

Sharon Harper

Sharon Harper

In this legislative session, dozens of proposed bills would adversely affect the way that Arizonans vote and how those votes are counted. These proposed measures range from requiring a purge of voters from the Permanent Early Voting List, to introducing stringent new identification requirements for those voting by mail, to shortening the early vote period available for all voters. Some measures go even further and would do away with the Permanent Early Voting List in its entirety or would require all early ballots to be returned by a voter in person. Most egregiously, one measure would even permit legislators to overturn the will of the voters during a presidential election. 

These proposals are a concerted effort from those in Arizona -and across the nation- who wish to sow additional doubts about our elections in the minds of voters, and feed into the paranoia that has plagued our political discourse over the past several months. Disturbingly, each of these proposals have one thing in common – making it more difficult for Arizonans to vote.

Adam Goodman

Adam Goodman

Despite claims made by the proponents of these misguided measures, Arizonans already have confidence in the integrity of our elections and, by and large, they find it easy to vote. This confidence in our election process has been validated by the ever-increasing numbers of registered voters in Arizona utilizing vote-by-mail (and other innovations). The creation and implementation of our election improvements have historically received significant bipartisan support and represent our shared commitment to protecting the right to vote for all Arizonans. 

We live in a very politically divided time, which underscores why we must protect the institutions that have been successful and have instilled voter confidence. Win or lose an election in Arizona, we know that the system is accurate, fair and dependable. We can, and should, regularly strive to make improvements to the way that we conduct this most vital component of democracy. However, these efforts in play at the Legislature today will hinder, not enhance, the precious right to vote. 

These measures seek to disenfranchise voters. They are “solutions” in search of a problem. They are attempts at voter suppression cloaked as reform – plain and simple. 

The onslaught of voter suppression measures that have been introduced or entertained this session has been alarming. Attempts to disenfranchise Arizona voters is not “election reform” and cannot be tolerated. Further, pandering to those who willfully choose to perpetuate misleading or inaccurate information cannot continue. True leaders will play an important role in sharing the truth – our election system in Arizona works.

Sharon Harper is president & CEO of Plaza Companies, past board chair of Greater Phoenix Leadership and current Co-Chair of the Greater Phoenix Leadership Public Policy Committee. Adam Goodman is CEO of Goodman’s Interior Structures and co-chair of the Public Policy Committee. 

 

2 comments

  1. Election reform is required to ensure the 2020 fraud does not repeat.
    Election reform that ensures the unbreakable chain of custody of a ballot is badly needed. The absentee w/o reason, unsolicited mail in voting, loose or non-existent voter id process, are big fraud gaps in the election process that fraudulently gave the election to an incompetent, mentally declining person who needs to spend time home enjoying the nature on the veranda. Hisd incompetence is on national display now with media (and people like you) working overtime to cover it up.

    Do not repeat the empty fact checkers, debunkers, security experts empty statements that the election was secure. The Democrat party even after 3 years of investigation (based upon fraudulent evidences – Steele dossier compiled in collaboration by the former Obama administration officials and Hillary campaign) with majority Democrat lawyers in the Mueller commission, were not convinced that Trump did not steal the election of 2016 in collusion with Russia.

    So stop with spurious factcheckers, debunkers and instead the Republicans should get 3 generous years of thorough 2020 election investigation based upon real numerous accounts of fraud, statistical vote distributions that are not considering the historical data and the very poor pre-election performance of Biden, with a commission made up of majority Republican lawyers and then the 2020 election fraud will be proven.

    SIMPLE EMPIRICAL FACT: if there is nothing to hide in the Maricopa ballots why do the election officials refuse to allow access even after a judge ordered the access? Simple answer because the election officials are aware of radu that will put them in jail.

    For once be a journalist who reports the facts and not takes sides.

    Sincerely yours Valentin SD.

    Brighton, MI

  2. Brighton, Mi, has it’s own share of problems. You should probably look into those before sticking your nose into OUR business. There was no fraud. Your guy lost. Get over it.

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