Legal Reference

New law stacks elections in favor of more taxes and laws

It looks like military votes will get special rights that the rest of us don't have! And that will help stack the deck for many elections where government employees, like military employees almost always vote for more taxes and government laws because those issues are jobs programs for them.

When elections have turn out rates where only 5 percent of voters show up, but 90% of the registered voters who are government employees show up to vote it tends to stack the elections in favor of more taxes and more government. That is why Phoenix and Tempe rulers instead of voting for increased taxes have put the issues on the ballot for the voters. In those elections 5% of the registered voters will vote, but more important 95% of the government employees will show up and vote for the new tax, stacking the elections.

Source

Arizona voters living abroad given options

New law to streamline process

by Alia Beard Rau - Feb. 12, 2010 12:00 AM

The Arizona Republic

Arizona voters serving in the military or living overseas will soon have some new ways to assure their ballot has been counted.

A bill unanimously supported by the state Legislature and signed into law by Gov. Jan Brewer on Thursday brings Arizona into compliance with federal legislation by setting new timelines for ballots being sent overseas and establishing a verification system for completed ballots. It is among the first bills of this legislative session to become law.

Secretary of State Ken Bennett said he doesn't know if the new process will be in place in time for the May 18 special election but said they will try.

"We're going to do everything we can, but for sure we'll have it ready for the primary in late August and the general in early November," Bennett said.

There were 14,322 Arizona ballots sent to military and overseas voters for the 2009 general election, according to the Secretary of State's Office. Of those, 9,171 were returned, and 9,022 were counted.

Matthew Benson, a spokesman for the office, said most of the rejected ballots were due to missed deadlines or problems with the voter's signature.

The new law does several things for military or overseas voters:

Allows the voter to decide how the voting material will be sent. Options could include online, fax, mail or e-mail. [Do us non-government voters get this option? Probably not and thus it probably violates the Equal protection clause of the Arizona Constitution]

Requires the ballot to be sent to the individual at least 45 days before the election, as long as the voter requested the ballot at least 48 days before the election.

Requires the county to send voters a ballot within 24 hours of completion of a voter-registration application.

Gives the voter access to a phone number and a secure Web site that he or she can use to verify the ballot was received.

Bennett said Arizona already allows overseas and military voters to vote via e-mail and already had been close to meeting the 45-day requirement.

"Probably the biggest change is that we have to provide some way for voters to verify that their ballot was received by the election office," he said.