Bill that would allow voters to track early ballots online passes Arizona Senate

State Sen. Paul Boyer has found himself at odds with more of his fellow Republicans as he has stood in the way of the GOP's push to change state elections.
Published: Mar. 9, 2022 at 7:17 PM MST
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PHOENIX (AP) — Arizona voters could track their early ballots online under a bill passed Wednesday by the Arizona Senate. SB 1411, which requires all Arizona counties to provide a tracking system on their websites by Jan. 1, 2024, still needs the approval of the state House and Gov. Doug Ducey before it becomes law.

Its passage was about the only highlight for Republicans on a day of setbacks for a party that made election changes a top priority. Nearly all of the nine election-related bills up for a vote in the Senate failed, including one that appropriated nearly $4 million and 29 full-time staff to conduct an audit of almost every aspect of the election in Maricopa and Pima counties as well as two randomly selected smaller counties. The bill would have essentially made the Senate Republicans’ 2020 election review a permanent fixture following elections but would have put it in the hands of a respected government agency.

The Democrats stood united against the measure and two Republicans joined them, Sens. Paul Boyer of Glendale and Michelle Ugenti-Rita of Scottsdale. “Some of them I don’t think are necessary. Others, if you put them all together and they all pass it would a helter-skelter discombobulated mess for the election counties, you know, the county officials, to actually implement these voter laws,” said Boyer.

Both and Ugenti-Rita have been big critics of the debunked partisan audit of the 2020 election, which former President Donald Trump falsely claimed was stolen. The audit didn’t uncover massive voter fraud like some supporters had claimed. But Republican lawmakers have introduced more than 100 pieces of legislation to alter state elections. Boyer found himself at odds with many in his own party after early on, he acknowledged that President Joe Biden was the legitimate winner.