Three lawmakers testify how difficult current rules are to voters
The hearing on the anti-petition rights bill, HB 2082 in the House Elections & Ethics Committee went very good yesterday. Senator Jason Atkinson (R), Senator Larry George (R) and Representative Mitch Greenlick (D) all testified on how difficult it is to get a measure on the ballot. Rep. Greenlick said how disconcerting it was to lose thousands of signatures, and ultimately missing the ballot, based on small technicalities that work against petition signers. Even petitions sent back to citizens to correct errors would often come back not fully fixed to election standards and would have to be discarded. Everything Greenlick said from his personal testimony touched exactly upon the problem voters and petitioners face.
Sara Nashif, who ran the Measure 43 campaign, gave a compelling testimony of loosing 28,000 disqualified signatures based on such technicalities.
Sitting on the committee was State Rep. Kim Thatcher who addressed HB 2082’s rule that says you cannot correct or clarify a petition signers bad address. Thatcher said her husband had poor handwriting and his signature would likely be disqualified without someone’s help.
Most notably, some seven amendments were added to the bill to make the bill worse, which include requiring 10,000 sigantures before the state will grant a petition a ballot title. The bill also requires paid circulators to be certified by government before circulating petitions.