New Report on Voting Rights in Arizona

Will Wilder, Brennan Center, has a new report, Arizona Is the Epicenter of the Fight for Voting Rights Today.

After a year and a half of conspir­acy theor­ies, a partisan postelec­tion “audit,” anti­demo­cratic legis­la­tion, elec­tion sabot­age rhet­oric from polit­ical candid­ates, and a Supreme Court ruling further weak­ing the Voting Rights Act, Arizona has become a key battle­ground in the fight for voting rights.

Arizon­a’s story is not all bad news, however. This fall, Arizona voters will likely have a chance to approve a ballot initi­at­ive to expand voting access and protect against elec­tion sabot­age.

In 2020, Arizona saw an increas­ingly diverse elect­or­ate turn out to vote at historic rates. As soon as returns start­ing coming in on elec­tion night, anti-voter activ­ists began spread­ing false claims about rampant voter fraud. . . .

Since the start of the 2021 legis­lat­ive session, Arizona lawmakers have continu­ally relied on these false claims of fraud to intro­duce and enact new restric­tions on the right to vote.

. . . . The center­piece of Arizon­a’s attack on voting rights so far is House Bill 2492, one of the only restrict­ive laws enacted in the coun­try so far this year. Previ­ously, Arizona law required voters to produce docu­ment­ary proof of citizen­ship to register to vote in state elec­tions. H.B. 2492 expands this require­ment to cover pres­id­en­tial elec­tions and also requires proof of citizen­ship to be eligible to vote by mail. Local advoc­ates have estim­ated that the bill could kick up to 192,000 Arizon­ans off the state voter rolls, and docu­ment­ary proof of citizen­ship laws histor­ic­ally have had a discrim­in­at­ory effect on communit­ies of color.

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