Citizens' VETO referendum of anti-voter bill HB2305 filed

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 

Citizens' VETO referendum of anti-voter bill HB2305 filed

Over 146,000 citizens sign to veto the bill on the November 2014 ballot.

 

Congratulations to the tremendous coalition that achieved this historic feat. The voters of Arizona spoke loudly today against the anti-voter bill, HB2305.

Politicians tried to rig the system for their own benefit by attacking voters and empowering big donors. Voters, especially early voters, will surely remember which lawmakers attacked their voting rights and which candidates for office support this war on voters come November 4, 2014.

The attempt to scrub voters from the Permanent Early Voting List (PEVL) would decrease participation in our elections and disproportionally impact equal access to voting for immigrant citizens, young and Independent voters who statistically are less likely to vote if removed from the PEVL.

According to the Secretary of State's office, only 12 percent of Independent voter requested and cast a ballot in the 2010 primary. (1,2)  With 1,075,334 registered Independents in Arizona, 946,294 potential Independent PEVL voters would face removal because they chose not to vote in a partisan primary. This simply isn't fair.

HB2305 requires PEVL voters to cast ballots in both the primary and general elections or face removal.

HB2305 doesn't stop with just Independents. As reported in an earlier joint press release, it would make it a crime for volunteers to collect and drop off ballots at the polls.  These efforts help elderly, homebound, disabled and working voters to participate in elections.

HB2305 would keep third parties off the ballot by raising the signature requirement to put a candidate on the ballot for all political parties except Republicans. Ballot access for third party candidates will become unlikely, reducing voter choices among candidates. For example, the number of signatures required for Libertarian candidates would increase by 4,000 percent.

HB2305 makes it more difficult for Arizona citizens to overturn bad laws by the Legislature through citizen initiatives. By instituting a host of technical barriers - including the margin size on petitions - that can be challenged in court, politicians are trying to take away the citizens' veto that's been part of Arizona's constitution since statehood.