Rep. Clark’s comments on third read of HB 2023, for the record

Mr. Speaker Pro-Tempore,

The debate on this bill made my and other’s concerns clear and those concerns were, unfortunately, ignored. So, I my comments on this bill are for the benefit of those attorneys who will fight this law in Arizona and a call for help to those elections law specialists at the Department of Justice. 

Talk of election integrity should fail to convince a reasonable observer when what we heard in committee was hearsay and rumor, not proof. No proof. This bill is a solution in search of a problem. 

HB2023 creates an undue burden to voting. Why? Very simply, without an written accommodation for those who carry a ballot at the request of the voter, a law creating a felony for a non-relative friend to even collect a ballot from the post office or return a ballot to the post office, for instance, will create confusion for voters and fear that such actions could result in a felony prosecution. 

My attempted amendment to the bill was an effort to find common ground and a solution that could help us track the problem.

If a voter fears committing a felony just because they —in true need— ask a friend to carry a ballot to the post office box in rural Arizona, that is a clear burden.

Thank you,

Ken Clark

State Representative, LD 24