Florida Must Implement New Election Rules So All Eligible Voters Are Heard

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 28, 2019

TALLAHASSEE, FL – Brad Ashwell, Florida State Director for All Voting is Local, issued the following statement in response to the signing of CS/SB 7066 by Governor Ron DeSantis:

“While this bill aims to remove barriers that kept voters from the ballot in 2018, we urge Florida officials to enact robust voter education, so all voices are heard. Voters must understand the new timelines and rules relating to mail and provisional ballots. We are also concerned that the expansion of the no-solicitation zone could hinder election protection efforts, which help many voters resolve poll worker errors and other challenges on Election Day.

“In addition, we are concerned new parking requirements for campus early voting sites are just an attempt to stop students from voting. Without early voting locations, hundreds of thousands of Florida students face unnecessary obstacles to exercising their fundamental right to vote.  

“Much of the attention has been about the restrictions this bill places on people with prior felony convictions seeking to vote. This bill goes directly against the spirit of Amendment 4 and the will of the voters who overwhelmingly approved it. These changes will make it virtually impossible for too many people to register to vote.”

Background: The legislature passed CS/SB 7066 in response to problems voters experienced in Florida during the 2018 election cycle such as ballots being tossed out because of mismatched signature and voting technology breakdowns. In the final days of the legislative session, lawmakers inserted language restricting the ability of people with felony convictions to register to vote by requiring them to pay fines, fees and civil obligations.

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All Voting is Local fights to eliminate needless and discriminatory barriers to voting before they happen, to build a democracy that works for us all. It is a collaborative campaign housed at The Leadership Conference Education Fund, in conjunction with the American Civil Liberties Union Foundation; the American Constitution Society; the Campaign Legal Center; and the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law. For more information about All Voting is Local, visit https://allvotingislocal.org and follow us on Twitter @votingislocal.

 

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