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.