After Georgia kicked in its new election rules, Liberty Nation Economics Correspondent Andrew Moran posed the question: “Who knew that proving your identity to vote, in the form of a driver’s license or state ID, is comparable to the odious era of Jim Crow?” The woke left were so aghast over the Peach State’s move that big businesses and even Major League Baseball decided to pull out of the state. Now, Florida’s Republican governor Ron DeSantis is catching heat for his newest election integrity law, signed May 6, that has gained approval from the right and frowns and lawsuits from the left.
Barely had the reform bill been signed before a lawsuit was filed claiming the legislation violates the First and Fourteenth Amendments. Senate Bill 90 provides for stricter voter identification requirements when opting to vote-by-mail, adds limits on who can pick up or return a voter’s ballot, bans private funding for elections, expands partisan observation during ballot tabulation, and includes more rules for drop box use as well as absentee ballots.
A coalition that includes the Black Voters Matter Fund, the League of Women Voters of Florida, and the Florida Alliance for Retired Americans filed the lawsuit, claiming the bill “caters to a dangerous lie about the 2020 election that threatens our most basic democratic values, and, in the end, makes it harder to vote without adequate justification for doing so.” The lawsuit further states that:
“SB 90 does not impede all of Florida’s voters equally. It is crafted to and will operate to make it more difficult for certain types of voters to participate in the state’s elections, including those voters who generally wish to vote with a vote-by-mail ballot and voters who have historically had to overcome substantial hurdles to reach the ballot box, such as Florida’s senior voters, youngest voters, and minority voters.”
A “wet signature” would be required as verification for voters which means a physically signed paper that is kept on file, and those wishing to vote-by-mail will be required to submit the request each year to receive the mail-in ballots. The bill also specifies that “Drop boxes must be geographically located so as to provide all voters in the county with an equal opportunity to cast a ballot” and that the boxes “must be monitored in person.”
Later that same day, another lawsuit was filed by Common Cause, Florida branches of the NAACP, and a disabilities rights group, alleging discrimination “against the state’s Black, Latino, and disabled voters,” according to Newsweek.
DeSantis, however, is optimistic about SB90, saying:
“Right now I have what we think is the strongest election integrity measures in the country. We’re also banning ballot harvesting. We’re not going to let political operatives go and get satchels of votes and dump them in some drop box.”
DeSantis and supporters of the bill will likely have a long fight ahead, but for now, some see light at the end of the tunnel regarding election security. “Me signing this bill here says, ‘Florida, your vote counts,’” the governor said. “Your vote is going to cast with integrity and transparency, and this is a great place for democracy.”
Read more from Kelli Ballard.