Saturday, July 20, 2024

Louisiana Legislature Passes Comprehensive Election Integrity Package

by BIZ Magazine

Baton Rouge, La. — In a significant move towards bolstering election security, Louisiana Secretary of State Nancy Landry announced the successful passage of the Department of State’s comprehensive Election Integrity Legislative Package. This legislative achievement encompasses 11 bills aimed at enhancing the accuracy and security of the state’s electoral processes.

Secretary Landry expressed her gratitude towards the lawmakers involved, saying, “I could not be more thankful to the authors and sponsors of the bills in our election integrity package and the members who supported those instruments. Thanks to them, all 11 bills in our legislative package have passed overwhelmingly and will help Louisiana continue on the path to being ranked first in the nation in election integrity. I thank Governor Landry for signing several of these bills into law already and I look forward to working with the Governor to ensure the remaining bills in this package become law so that we can continue our work of making Louisiana’s elections the safest and most secure in the country.”

The legislative package includes the following key bills:

  1. HB 114 by Representative Les Farnum: Introduces an expanded voter canvass to further ensure the accuracy of Louisiana’s voter rolls.
  2. HB 285 (Now Act 264) by Representative Mark Wright: Establishes the Division of Election Integrity within the Department of State.
  3. HB 449 (Now Act 25) by Representative Michael Melerine: Mandates that court judgments of interdiction be delivered to the Registrar of Voters in the parish where the interdicted individual is registered.
  4. HB 476 by Representative Josh Carlson: Intensifies the crackdown on absentee ballot harvesting.
  5. HB 506 by Representative Polly Thomas: Requires those conducting voter registration drives to register with the Secretary of State’s office to ensure timely submission of voter registrations and protection of voters’ personal information.
  6. HB 581 by Representative Polly Thomas: Imposes specific penalties for witnessing more than one absentee ballot of a non-family member and sets age and address requirements for absentee ballot witnesses.
  7. SB 101 (Now Act 291) by Senator Blake Miguez: Prohibits ranked-choice voting in Louisiana elections.
  8. SB 155 (Now Act 302) by Senator Caleb Kleinpeter: Limits assistance with absentee ballots to immediate family members, prohibiting individuals from assisting with more than one absentee ballot.
  9. SB 218 (Now Act 317) by Senator Caleb Kleinpeter: Restricts the unsolicited distribution of absentee ballot applications.
  10. SB 226 (Now Act 321) by Senator Heather Cloud: Establishes uniform standards for tabulating absentee ballots.
  11. SB 436 by Senator Mike Fesi: Grants the Secretary of State the authority to require proof of U.S. citizenship when registering to vote.

These measures collectively aim to tighten controls around voter registration, absentee ballots, and election administration. The creation of the Division of Election Integrity signifies a dedicated effort to oversee and enforce these new regulations.

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