WA Legislator Wants to End Mail in Voting, Return to In Person
It's called the "Free and Fair Elections Act of 2021" and it would bring back the voting booth.
WA State Senator Doug Ericksen (Ferndale) has put together legislation that would get rid of vote by mail.
In short, his plan would:
- end voter registration 14 days PRIOR to an election
- voting locations would be open "several weeks" prior to and including election day.
- general election day voting would be a state holiday, to ensure working people have time to get to polling stations.
- county auditors would have to provide voting capability in person two weeks prior to an election.
- absentee ballots could be requested, but must be received no later than election day, except for military and overseas ballots.
- voters in person would have to provide a legally valid -or government issued ID to be able to vote.
- voter harvesting would become a class "C" felony, preventing third-party persons from 'collecting' ballots and potentially tampering with them.
There are some other provisions as well. Ballot harvesting is especially troublesome, says Ericksen. It's the practice of people going door to door and picking up ballots for people; often used under the guise of 'helping' elderly or people who are unable to drive or easily travel to drop boxes.
There have been several dozen incidents, including those Project Veritas hidden camera videos, of people using ballot harvesting to commit fraud by tampering with or filling out ballots 'for' people.
The bill would also require voting machines create a duplicate 'paper trail' so individual ballots could be examined in case of re counts.
The bill is sure to get resistance from Gov. Inslee and likely Democrats in the House and Senate; Inslee swears by mail in voting. The bill is expected to be introduced in January during the next legislative session.