Arizona Field Hearing Reveals Ballot Harvesting Prohibitions Necessary to Prevent Fraud
PHOENIX – During the Committee on House Administration's Subcommittee on Elections Field Hearing yesterday in Phoenix, Arizona on Voting Rights and Election Administration, Representative Debbie Lesko (R-AZ), who represented Republicans for the hearing, discussed Arizona's current law prohibiting the practice of ballot harvesting. Ballot harvesting is the practice in which organized campaign workers or volunteers collect absentee ballots from voters’ homes and drop them off at a polling place or election office. The bill, H.B. 2023, was originally co-sponsored by Arizona State Senator Michelle Ugenti-Rita who served as a witness at the hearing to discuss the reasons behind creating the legislation and its implementation.
"Yesterday's field hearing demonstrated the real need to protect our elections from ballot harvesting. The hearing also pointed out the need for state and county election officials to work with Native American leadership to address their unique election needs,” said Rep. Debbie Lesko. “I thank State Senator Michelle Ugenti-Rita for her leadership on the issue of ballot harvesting here in Arizona."
"I thank Congresswoman Lesko and Senator Ugenti-Rita for their participation in yesterday's hearing highlighting the real threat of ballot harvesting. During the midterm elections, we saw in North Carolina’s 9th District that ballots harvested illegally caused the state to call for a new election, and we saw in California, where ballot harvesting is currently legal, several races decided days after Election Day," said Ranking Member Rodney Davis (R-IL). "My hope is that the discussion in the hearing will open the eyes of my Democratic colleagues to these concerns.
Davis went on to say, “Election officials across the U.S. must ensure that a chain of custody is established and documented for all vote-by-mail ballots in order to avoid even the appearance of impropriety. I encourage all election officials, state legislatures, and my colleagues across the aisle in Washington to look at the steps Arizona's state legislature has proactively taken to protect the integrity of its elections from this easily corruptible practice and consider implementing similar safeguards in their states.”
You can watch the field hearing HERE.
Read Also: Davis & Lesko Joint Statement on Ballot Harvesting Ban in Arizona