Adding insult to injury, North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory says he will sign the damaging elections bill that was rushed through the legislature, despite admitting he’s not familiar with the bill. The legislature ended the 2013 session last week, but not before pushing the bill through at the last minute.
What started as a bill on electing school board members received an important amendment as it went through the Illinois Senate, transforming it into a major piece of positive election reform. HB2418 was approved by both chambers this week and has been sent to the governor for his signature.
Colorado has taken major step to improve voters’ rights while simplifying, modernizing and making the state’s election system more fiscally responsible. With Governor Hickenlooper’s signing of the Voter Access and Elections Modernization Act, HB1303, Colorado has become the most recent example for what states should be doing to improve elections.
To the dismay of voting rights proponents, Governor Chris Christie vetoed a bill that would allow voters to vote early at select polling locations. The bill passed the General Assembly mostly along party lines which reduced the likelihood for the Governor’s signature.
The first day of the Florida legislative session in early March, saw the passage of a major election reform bill in the Florida House of Representatives. Despite the early promise of prompt reform, it took until the last day of session, this past Friday, for both chambers of the legislature agree on one comprehensive reform bill. The final product, HB 7013, offers some reforms to undo damage caused by 2011’s HB 1355. Unfortunately, the solutions are far from perfect and more work needs to be done.
North Carolina has made a push in recent months to become the worst state for student voters in the country. Following a failed bill to punish in-state students by removing their dependency status for state income taxes, the state legislature omitted student IDs from the list of acceptable voter ID under the new voter ID law set to go into effect in 2016.
We spent a bit of time awhile back shaming Wisconsin for its omnibus legislation which threatened to reinstate voter ID, limit early voting hours, and toss out ballots at random. We certainly were not the only ones with qualms about the bill, and it would seem that our collective guilt trip worked!
Wisconsin seems to have dedicated this past month to limiting voting rights in the state. Last week, an omnibus bill was announced which would place numerous restrictions on Wisconsin voters. Assembly Speaker Robin Vos has long been a proponent of such regulations as well as the state’s photo ID legislation. Following Vos’s lead, Rep.