When it comes to the ease of voting and transparency of money in politics, the candidates vying to become Arizona's top elections official are fundamentally different.
Katie Hobbs, the Democratic candidate for Arizona secretary of state, talks frequently about removing barriers that can make it harder for minorities, seniors and low-income people to vote.
Steve Gaynor, her Republican opponent, talks little about ballot access, instead focusing on his concerns about hypothetical fraud and immigrants who aren't here legally.
Both candidates say the secretary of state — Arizona's second-highest statewide elected official charged with overseeing elections — needs to play a more assertive role to prevent lines and problems at the polls.
But in terms of policies that affect access to the ballot and so-called "dark money" in politics, their philosophies are polar opposites.
What are their philosophies?
Many of the issues Hobbs and Gaynor have talked about aren't solely under the secretary's control, given the Arizona Legislature and the federal government write laws that affect access to the ballot.
Still, their outlooks about access to the ballot and money in politics are important because the secretary historically has been a key architect of state election laws.
Neither candidate has released a detailed policy platform articulating their ideas for the office, if elected. But on the campaign trail, they have described their priorities.
Hobbs,the minority leader in the Arizona Senate, wants to overturn a state law that makes it illegal to drop off another person's completed ballot at a polling place. She's eager to expand voting center hours so voters have more time to get to the polls.
She also wants to automatically restore rehabilitated felons' voting rights once they've completed their sentence and paid all fines.
"I think every American should want every American to be able to vote," Hobbs said.
"We should absolutely address fraud that is occurring. (But) we shouldn’t make laws based on hypotheticals."
Meanwhile, conservatives have questioned Hobbs' complaints about widespread voter suppression in the state.
Kory Langhofer, a Republican election attorney who has worked with Gaynor's campaign, said it's simply a myth that Arizona makes it difficult for anyone to vote.
"It's a standard line that Democratic candidates use to smear Republicans," Langhofer said. "It's very easy to vote in Arizona... so damn easy that you don't have to leave your house."
Gaynor, a wealthy businessman, wants to create new safeguards to make sure that the signatures on voters' mail-in ballots aren't being forged.
He's also alleged that "illegal immigrants" could be voting as the result of a legal settlement the state entered to resolve a lawsuit alleging it wasn't registering some eligible voters for federal elections.
Two statewide Republican officials, incumbent Secretary of State Michele Reagan and Attorney General Mark Brnovich, signed off on that settlement.
Proven cases of voter fraud are rare. Since 2008, 20 people have been convicted in Arizona for voting twice in an election, according to the Attorney General's Office.
"The Secretary of State must restore trust and confidence in the integrity of our elections," Gaynor wrote in response to The Arizona Republic's candidate questionnaire.
Voter-advocacy groups have raised concerns about Gaynor's views. Joel Edman, director of the Arizona Advocacy Network, called Gaynor's stances on mail-in ballots, voter registration and Spanish-language ballots "troubling."
“None of those serve any actual security purpose," he said of Gaynor's proposals. “What we know they do is keep people from voting."
Here are four key areas where the candidates for secretary of state disagree about state election practices.
1. Early mail-in ballots
Over the past two decades, mail-in voting has become most Arizonans' preferred method of voting. About 75 percent of voters typically cast a ballot via mail.
To vote by mail, voters are required to sign the front of the envelope containing their ballot. County recorders then verify their signature to ensure it resembles the signature on their registration.
Gaynor's stance: Gaynor doesn't outright oppose early voting by mail, but he has said he worries it provides ample "opportunity for fraud."
He said he became concerned about the issue after he noticed that his father, who is 95, signed a mail-in ballot with an illegible signature that didn't match his voter registration.
Gaynor said the ballot wasn't challenged.
In an email, he said the secretary should push for new safeguards: "I believe the best way to verify signatures is to use a computer-based artificial intelligence program assisted by human operators."
"I have seen signatures on ballot envelopes that should have been questioned but were not."
Hobbs' stance: Hobbs said she sees no problem with how mail-in ballots are handled today given county recorders' offices are already reviewing signatures to make sure they're valid.
"There’s clearly a process in place," Hobbs said. "I’m not really sure what his concerns are."
2. 'Dark money' in campaign spending
One of the clearest contrasts between Gaynor and Hobbs is their stances on ending so-called "dark money," or anonymous political spending, in elections.
Dark money typically refers to political spending by advocacy groups — often in the form of 501(c)4 non-profit corporations — that aren't required to, and won't, disclose their donors.
Hobbs' stance: Hobbs is an outspoken critic of the practice. She voted against a 2017 Arizona law that ceded most of the state's authority to police anonymous spending to the federal government.
“Voters have a right to know who’s trying to influence the outcome of an election," she said.
If elected, Hobbs said she would urge the Legislature to pass laws that require disclosure of donors. She noted the secretary has no authority to act unilaterally.
However, Hobbs has said she wouldn't take a public stance on ballot measures dealing with the issue because, as the chief elections officer, the secretary should be neutral on ballot measures.
This summer, a citizens initiative to outlaw anonymous spending was knocked off the November ballot.
Gaynor's stance: Gaynor hasn't outlined any plans to require such groups to reveal their contributors.
He suggested, in The Republic's candidate survey, that non-profit groups have a constitutional right to contribute anonymously. He wrote, "Under Federal law, contributions to non-profit entities are, under most cases, anonymous."
While the groups don't have to disclose donors, they are required to report their expenses in campaigns. Gaynor said those reports should be more easily accessible.
3. Carrying other people's ballots
Under Arizona law, it's a felony to take another voter's early ballot to the polls.
GOP lawmakers said the law was aimed at preventing fraud, alleging collectors were "harvesting" ballots by opening them or otherwise dividing how they were marked and tossing those of the opposition.
They provided no evidence that was happening, and Democrats sued to overturn the law because they say it disenfranchises minority voters.
So far, courts have upheld the 2016 law. It contains exceptions so members of the same household, caregivers, postal workers and family members can deliver a ballot to the polls.
Gaynor's view: Given the high percentage of Arizonans who vote by mail, Gaynor wrote in his email that he sees "no reason why people should turn their ballots over to anyone other than election officials or the U.S. Post Office."
He didn't elaborate about why he thinks ballot collection should stay prohibited.
Hobbs' view: Hobbs said the law has made it harder for many voters to cast a ballot, particularly Native Americans in rural areas of the state who often live miles from polling places and don't receive mail.
“That law actually makes it harder for (the) entire Navajo community to vote," she said. “It was certainly meant to disenfranchise voters."
She said the law is unnecessary because voter fraud already is a felony.
The Secretary of State's Office hasn't received any complaints of potential violations since the "harvesting" law was passed two years ago, according to a spokesman.
4. Voting rights of rehabilitated felons
Under Arizona law, anyone convicted of a felony cannot vote while they are in jail or under probation.
First-time felons have their rights automatically restored. But anyone convicted of more than one felony must petition a judge to have their civil rights restored.
Hobbs' stance: Hobbs said the process is unnecessarily difficult and those who have completed their sentence should automatically be eligible to register to vote without petitioning a judge.
"If you have paid your fine and done your time, and can prove that, you should be able to vote," she said.
Hobbs said the state should also do a better job of informing people with one felony conviction that they can register to vote once they've completed their sentence. She said prospective voters are given misleading information about that.
Gaynor's stance: Gaynor wrote in his email, "I support the law as is." He didn't offer further explanation.