5/7 All Eyes on Arizona
Yesterday, the States United Democracy Center hosted a press briefing with Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs and the election experts who have been granted access to the Veterans Memorial Coliseum to observe the so-called “audit” in Arizona. This was the first time the election experts have spoken jointly to the press, and parts of the press briefing were carried on MSNBC. The three specialists, Elizabeth Howard, Jennifer Morrell, and Ryan Macias, and I were joined by Secretary Hobbs, former Arizona Attorney General and States United Advisory Board member Grant Woods. We discussed the letter sent by the U.S. Department of Justice to Arizona Senate President Karen Fann and heard directly from the expert observers about what they are witnessing on the ground. During the briefing, Secretary Hobbs warned about the potential for similar antics in other states. “They’re writing the playbook to take this across the country,” she said.
Looking ahead to next week, we are preparing for the Senate mark-up of S.1, the For the People Act. We’ve updated our H.R.1/S.1 state impact report to include analysis of Kentucky, Maine, North Carolina, Oregon, Utah, West Virginia, and updated fact sheets for Georgia (post-SB202 passage) and Florida (post-SB90 passage). As a reminder, the report examines how the For the People Act affects federal elections in particular states, with a focus on how the legislation would protect the freedom to vote and help thwart voter suppression efforts sweeping statehouses across the country. The full report and previous state impact fact sheets are available on our resources page here.
I’ve also included below a round up of some of the issues we are tracking as we prepare for more voter suppression efforts at the state level, with Governor Ron DeSantis signing a bill this week (SB90) and similar legislation likely on the move in Texas next week.
Finally, I wanted to share that the States United Democracy Center received recognition from Fast Company for this year’s “World Changing Ideas Awards” under the categories of “On The Rise” and “General Excellence.” We are grateful for the opportunity to continue supporting state leaders and fighting alongside our partners to protect American democracy.
Here is this week’s update:
|New York Times: “Constitutional Challenges Loom Over Proposed Voting Bill.” By Adam Liptak. (May 6, 2021)
“If the sweeping voting rights bill that the House passed in March overcomes substantial hurdles in the Senate to become law, it would reshape American elections and represent a triumph for Democrats eager to combat the wave of election restrictions moving through Republican-controlled state legislatures. But passage of the bill, known as H.R. 1, would end a legislative fight and start a legal war that could dwarf the court challenges aimed at the Affordable Care Act over the past decade.”
Politico: “Trump attorney, other allies launch voter fraud organization.” By Alex Isenstadt. (May 6, 2021)
Washington Post: “Democrats tweak marquee voting bill as they seek path out of Senate.” By Mike DeBonis. (May 5, 2021)
Newsweek: “Trump’s Facebook Appeal Called Oath Keepers Parasites, Separated Them From ‘Genuine’ Supporters. By Jenni Fink. (May 5, 2021)
CBS News: “Major U.S. sports unions sign letter opposing voting rights changes in Georgia and other states.” By Caitlin O’Kane. (May 4, 2021)
KOLD News 13: “Arizona election workers are concerned over Maricopa County vote county.” By Bud Foster. (May 6, 2021)
The Washington Post: “Arizona Republicans push back against Justice Department concerns, setting up possible clash over Maricopa County recount.” By Rosalind S. Helderman. (May 6, 2021)
The New York Times: “Florida and Texas Join the March as Republicans Press Voting Limits.” By Nick Corasaniti and Reid J. Epstein. (May 7, 2021)
Forbes: “Civil Rights Groups Sue Florida Moments After DeSantis Signs ‘Voter Suppression Bill’ Into Law.” By Alison Durkee. (May 6, 2021)
Michigan Advance: “GOP pushes bills to restrict the use of ballot boxes on Election Day.” By Allison Donahue. (May 6, 2021)
AP: “Ohio is the latest state to see GOP-backed voting law rewrite.” By Julie Carr Smyth. (May 6, 2021)
The Guardian: “Texas lawmakers race against the clock to push through new voting restrictions.” By Alexandra Villarreal. (May 7, 2021)
ABC News: “Restrictive Texas voting bill advances to floor vote.” By Alisa Wiersema. (May 6, 2021)