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April 6, 2023

April 6, 2023

In Focus This Week

Securing 2023: Defending US elections through investment and reform
New report offers key recommendations for 2024

The Alliance for Securing Democracy at the German Marshall Fund and Issue One recently released a new report that outlines thirteen steps the federal government and state legislatures should take to make our elections stronger and more secure going into 2024. Securing 2024: Defending US Elections through Investment and Reform is anchored by key recommendations that have had strong bipartisan support in recent years.

Nearly all of the proposals included in the report connect to the persistent lack of sufficient federal funding for local and state election administration. Our election infrastructure is chronically underfunded, which forces many elections officials across the country to face difficult budgetary decisions when administering their elections. Ensuring robust annual appropriations for election funding is a critical step to help state and local election officials meet basic modernization, staffing, and security needs, as well as implement many of the other reforms detailed in the report.

“The demands and expectations facing election officials have increased exponentially in recent years,” said David Levine, report co-author and Elections Integrity Fellow at the Alliance for Securing Democracy at GMF. “Federal and state legislators have an opportunity right now to ensure that ongoing challenges—from cyber threats and disinformation to the pace at which we count ballots—don’t undermine elections in 2024 and beyond. Republicans and Democrats must show a united front and deliver much-needed funding to keep our elections safe and fair.”

Congress took an important step at the end of last year by passing a bipartisan update to the Electoral Count Act, closing a loophole governing how Congress counts electoral votes in presidential elections. This success is an indicator that there is bipartisan agreement that improving the security of our elections before 2024 is essential, and it offers a roadmap for future reforms that will secure our democracy.

“Election officials ensured that the 2022 midterm elections were a success, but it’s time that our federal and state leaders step up, take action, and deliver the proper funds and resources these officials need to do their job safely and effectively,” said Issue One’s Legislative Manager and report co-author Gideon Cohn-Postar. “It’s vital that Republicans and Democrats work together now to strengthen the security and accessibility of our elections before the 2024 cycle.”

In addition to regular, sufficient federal funding for elections, other key recommendations from the report include:

  • Giving election officials more federal resources to counter cyber threats, including those from foreign adversaries;
  • Criminalizing threats or attacks against election workers;
  • Enacting privacy protections for election workers by prohibiting doxxing and giving at-risk individuals the ability to remove personal information from public information requests and searches; and
  • Improving election officials’ ability to counter election-related disinformation, including on social media platforms.

Read the full Securing 2024: Defending US Elections through Investment and Reform report here.

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2023 Elections

Voters went to the polls in at least seven states — Alaska, California, Colorado, Illinois, Missouri, Oklahoma and Wisconsin — for statewide and local elections, as well as special elections. Turnout was high for Wisconsin’s statewide supreme court election, but low in Chicago’s mayoral runoff, despite high early voting numbers. Weather played a major role in Illinois and for what may be the first time ever, the NFL Draft had an impact on voting in Missouri. Here’s a brief look at how things played out this week in some states:

Colorado: Several cities held local elections this week including Denver. Pre-election day turnout was relatively low in Denver, but a rush of last-minute voters in the Mile High City caused some delays in ballot-counting. Around 175,000 people in Denver in the 22 days since ballots were mailed on March 13, according to Paul D. López, City of Denver clerk, however about 55,000, around 30% of the ballots, came in in the last two hours of Election Day. Despite the deluge of last-minute votes, Lopez anticipated all the unchallenged ballots will be counted by the end of the day Wednesday. The Denver elections office has until April 12 to cure challenged ballots. Given the 17-candidate field for mayor, it’s likely that once all the ballots are counted and cured that a runoff will be necessary.

Illinois: Severe spring weather was the story of the day for elections officials and voters in Illinois. Numerous vote centers in Rock Island County lost power during the height of storms. Election officials in Kane, Kendall and DuPage counties said that despite some stormy weather Tuesday, residents still showed up at the polls to vote on Election Day. Officials with all three counties said they saw dips in people coming in to vote during the storm which produced plenty of rain and some sizable hail Tuesday afternoon in the Aurora area. When Fulton County was unable to gather all the election equipment compile results because of severe weather, Tazewell County Clerk John Ackerman stepped up to offer assistance. Tazewell County too experienced storm-related issues. Ackerman posted on the county’s Facebook page that approximately 150 election judges, election staff and tabulation facility volunteers had to shelter in-place for about 45 minutes as storms rolled through. “No Tazewell County Election Judge was left in harm’s way during this potentially dangerous time,” Ackerman wrote. “While plans had been discussed and procedures outlined for an emergency situation like the one that unfolded last night, this was the first time those plans and procedures where implemented.”  In Lake County, a polling place in Waukegan opened around 40 minutes late, and three voting sites in Highland Park were shuttered for approximately 90 minutes because of a lockdown and gun threat at nearby Highland Park High School Tuesday morning. The Waukegan polling place stayed open till 7:40pm and the three locations in Highland Park remained open till 8:35 p.m. LaSalle County Clerk Jennifer Ebner says her first election she ran went really good. She credits her staff for what they do. The Kane County Clerk’s election website was shut down around 9:30 p.m. Tuesday after officials realized a problem in uploading reports from the county’s tabulating system. When the website came back online a little after midnight, some unofficial vote tallies were lower than they were before the website went down. “It was an error,” Kane County Clerk Jack Cunningham said. “And when we found it, we corrected it as quickly as we could.” In Madison County results rolled in quickly this year. “We’re cooking down here,” Madison County Clerk Linda Andreas said about 8:20 p.m. Tuesday. As of Tuesday night, turnout in the Chicago mayoral runoff election totaled about 35%, with 558,547 total ballots cast. With more than 90,000 mail-in ballots that could still come in and be counted over the next two weeks, that figure will certainly rise, though even if all those ballots are returned, turnout will still fall short of the 41% seen in the 2015 runoff election. Chicago Board of Elections spokesman Max Bever said Tuesday’s turnout was a slight improvement from the first round of voting on Feb. 28, when turnout stood at 32.1% before outstanding mail-in ballots came in over the next two weeks.

Missouri: Overall Election Day was smooth in most Missouri jurisdictions, although there were some noteworthy issues. Voters in Kansas City attempting to vote in Union Station were forced to deal with road closures due to the upcoming NFL Draft. Some voters said they had a hard time finding where to park to get the polls because of road closures and there not being enough signage or directions provided. “They have to understand we are sharing a big parking lot with the NFL, with the post office,” said Shawn Kieffer, Director of Elections. “There’s less spots but still plenty of parking in the facility.” In Greene County, the police were called due to a heated confrontation at a polling place between a poll worker wearing a MAGA hat and voters. “I came here personally and spoke to the election judge,” said Republican Clerk Shane Schoeller, who’s announced a bid for Missouri Secretary of State next year. The election judge put a different hat on and was allowed to remain at the polls for the rest of his shift. Schoeller said voters are allowed to wear political attire as long as it’s unrelated to any ballot issues in that specific election. However, he said election judges should refrain from wearing anything political in nature that could disrupt the voting process, including MAGA clothing. In Boone County one polling place was forced to go into temporary lock down because of a nearby police investigation of a man with knife.

Wisconsin: With the eyes of much of the nation on the Wisconsin Supreme Court race, it was a relatively smooth day at the polls in the Badger State, even with the high turnout. In Green Bay, when a voting machine at the Green Bay Botanical Garden and its backup both failed to function, the city borrowed a voting machine from Brown County. Voters in Kenosha braved the rain on Tuesday, but  none of the severe weather like that in Illinois. In Wauwatosa, longtime poll worker Dawn-Marie Metz spent Tuesday serving as a door greeter at her assigned polling place. “Giving back to my community and then seeing how elections are run, it’s made me feel much more safe and secure with our election process,” Metz explained. “It is an arduous process and people take it seriously and we take a lot of time doing it.” One polling site in Eau Claire ran out of paper ballots for about an hour during the afternoon, but voters were able to use the site’s electronic voting machine.

Election News This Week

Early Voting: This week, Vote Early Day released its 2022 impact report highlighting record breaking participation and early voting turnout in the midterms. According to the report, Nearly 3,000 organizations in all fifty states organized events to encourage their friends and neighbors to vote early. This coalition included national name brands like MTV, Patagonia, Paramount, Twitter, The League of Women Voters, Snapchat, YMCA, NAACP and many more. On the ground, thousands of local nonprofits, businesses, campus groups, election leaders and libraries organized in their community to increase the number of ballots cast ahead of Election Day. The topline result was that early voting increased by 5.8 million votes over the 2018 midterms.

Election Office News:  Elections officials and workers cut the ribbon on the newly remodeled Trumbull County, Ohio Board of Elections building. The front part of the office was completely reworked. Officials say it will help improve the flow and access for voters. The project started back in mid-December. ARPA money was used to pay for the remodel, which came in under budget at $420,000. The Lee County, Florida Supervisor of Elections Office has opened a new branch in Lehigh Acres, which will also serve as an early voting site. The Carbon County, Pennsylvania elections office is back in operation after a sprinkler leak forced the office to move to a temporary location while the office dried out and the damage could be assessed. The bulk of the damage occurred in a conference room and while they are all being inspected, it seems that the county’s voting equipment survived. The Mesa County, Colorado commission recently approved spending $133,000 to renovate the elections division. Construction on the Washington County, Tennessee election commission’s new building is wrapping up more quickly than expected. Inmates with the sheriff’s department’s work detail program did interior work on the building, according to Administrator of Elections, Dana Jones and having those additional workers helped speed up the process. The Cherokee County, Georgia elections and voter registration office recently moved into a new, larger location. Larimer County Colorado’s election office will get about $3 million over two years to reconfigure and expand the space in which it counts ballots and stores election equipment.

Follow-Up: Residents and officials in Cascade County, Montana packed a meeting room and tuned in on Zoom to hear from new Clerk and Recorder Sandra Merchant at a community meeting late last week. According to the Daily Montanan, an estimated 150 people packed the meeting room and another 100 tuned in online. In March Merchant sent emails to school districts telling them the planned mail-in ballot election would not be possible and she also requested that the Great Falls Public Library postpone its election to September. Merchant said during the presentation absentee ballots will be going out April 17 and a poll election will be conducted for the school board election on May 2, a break from the typical mail-in ballot election where ballots are sent to all registered voters in the county. She also confirmed the public schools mill levy election will take place on June 6. More than 80% of Cascade County voters typically vote by mail, but Merchant said Merchant said sending ballots to just absentee voters would be cost-effective, citing the cost of the multiple envelopes and materials as well as the cost involved in using an out-of-county ballot sorter. Merchant, a local businesswoman, won the clerk and recorder’s race in November after a hand recount by fewer than 40 votes against 16-year incumbent Rina Moore. One resident asked if Merchant could explain how she felt about mail-in ballots, to which she said her feelings on mail-in ballots were not relevant. “The people have elected me to this office for transparency and integrity, and that’s what I intend to fulfill,” she said. “I am a citizen just like you are, a citizen of Cascade County, and I also vote here too. I put my ballot in the box just like everybody else does. And I also want fair, transparent and secure elections.”

Promote the Vote: Mississippi Secretary of State Michael Watson recently honored K-12 students and teachers during an awards ceremony that marked the conclusion of the 2022 Promote the Vote program, a longstanding voter education effort consisting of mock elections, contests and elections curriculum. The 2022 “Why Vote?” theme encouraged students to consider the importance of voting and how it corresponds to their beliefs and values. This year’s ceremony honored 34 student winners and their teachers from across the state. More than 19,000 students participated in the 2022 PTV program and more than 1.5 million students have participated since the program’s inception. “It is an incredible honor to recognize the work of our young Mississippians during the PTV Awards Ceremony,” Watson said. “We are thrilled to have them participate in the program, but more importantly, we are proud they are engaged in learning about the elections process. Thank you to all the teachers, parents, principals, and other administrators who contribute to the success of the program and help instill civic responsibility among our students.”

An Actual Stolen Election: In 1948 Lydon B. Johnson won the Democratic Senate primary in a runoff, however in 1977 Luis Salas, a Texas election judge went on the record with the Associated Press detailing how the election was actually stolen on behalf of Johnson who was a congressman at the time. The story made headlines in 1977 and now, the audio recordings from Salas’ interview with AP reporter James W. Mangan are available on the LBJ Presidential Library Museum’s archival website. After Mangan’s death in 2015 at the age of 87, his family found the labeled cassette tapes at his San Antonio home and donated them last summer to the library on the campus of the University at Texas at Austin. Mangan’s son, Peter, told the AP listening the tapes was like getting “a little window into history.” On one cassette, he said, it sounds like his father is in his car, reciting what he’d just been told.  “You can hear cars going by and he’s kind of, you can tell he’s a little excited, because I think he finally got the goods,” Peter Mangan said. Johnson, elected to the U.S. House in 1937, had run for U.S. Senate in 1941 and lost to then-Gov. Wilbert Lee “Pappy” O’Daniel in an election widely accepted by historians to have been corrupt, Mark Lawrence, the library’s director, said. “The standard story that gets told, and I think there’s an awful lot to it, is that when LBJ’s second chance comes along in 1948, he’s determined not to have the election stolen from him again.” James Mangan retired from AP on Jan. 1, 1989, after a 36-year career with the company that took him to cities across the U.S. and to Europe. With each move, Peter Mangan said, his father held on to the Box 13 tapes. “He always kept these,” he said, “so I know they must have been important to him.”

Personnel News: Marion, Massachusetts Town Clerk Elizabeth Magauran has been selected by the Massachusetts Town Clerk Association to hold the position of Certified Massachusetts Municipal Clerk (CMMC) designation. Collier County, Florida Supervisor of Elections Jennifer Edwards is retiring. Seminole County, Florida Supervisor of Elections Chris Anderson has announced that he will seek re-election. Janine Eveler’s last day as Cobb County, Georgia’s election director is April 14. Erika White is the new North Dakota election director. Kaye Robucci is retiring from the Washington County, Maryland board of elections. Loree Farmer Hall and Ronald Dean Sifford have joined the DeKalb County, Tennessee election commission.

Legislative Updates

Alabama: The Alabama Senate approved two bills that would codify current voting practices. Senate Bill 9 and Senate Bill 10, both sponsored by Sen. Clyde Chambliss, R-Prattville, passed through the chamber. SB 9 requires the use of paper ballots in voting machines. SB 10 prevents the use of voting machines that connect to the internet. Each passed on 29-0 votes. Both measures passed April 4. Kathy Jones, president of the Alabama League of Women Voters, previously told the Alabama Reflector that she is concerned about potential impact on voters with disabilities. “It is a preemptive law,” Jones said. “Right now, all of our ballots are done with paper. That is just how things are done here in Alabama. This law seems to prohibit having any alternative to a paper ballot for those who are disabled or incapacitated.” The bill moves to the House of Representatives.

Arizona: Republican state lawmakers are moving on multiple fronts to head off a possible voter initiative that would implement ranked choice voting in Arizona. The efforts come even as the groups considering a measure for the 2024 ballot remain in the early stages of their effort and concede it may not even move ahead. Last week the Republican-controlled Legislature placed their own measure on the ballot precluding the non-traditional election format they contend disenfranchises some primary elections. The proposal, HCR2033, would preempt any effort to change primary election laws to advance more than one person per political party to the general election.’

The state Senate has advanced a bill that would remove voters from the Active Early Voting List if they do not vote after one election cycle. Currently, they’re removed after two consecutive cycles. Sen. Juan Mendez (D-Tempe) said the measure is disrespectful, and makes voters jump through hoops. “Removing people from the Active Early Voting List without their approval simply because they choose to sit out one election cycle is too harsh of a punishment just to appease the conspiracies that try to slander our process of voting by mail,” Mendez said. Republican Sen. John Kavanaugh (Fountain Hills) spoke in favor of the measure. He said the voters can easily stay on the list, even after missing an election. The bill now waits to be signed or vetoed by Governor Hobbs.

A bill that would require 24/7 surveillance of ballot drop boxes continues to move through the Arizona Legislature. The measure was approved Monday by the House Appropriations Committee. The bill would block county recorders from using drop boxes that are unmonitored, unless they are inside  a polling place or county office. Outdoor boxes would only be used if at least two election workers, one Republican and one Democrat, watch the box 8am to 5 pm, with a livestream at night. It would also not allow most voters to drop off ballots from their cars. Proponents argue drop boxes don’t satisfy constitutional requirements for secrecy in voting. Those opposed say the bill is based on falsehoods and would disenfranchise voters. It now goes to the House floor.

The Senate voted to require that the state’s top election official not participate in overseeing elections in which he or she is on the ballot. That leaves the proposal one vote away from heading to Democratic governor and former secretary of state Katie Hobbs. The legislation proposed by Rep. Rachel Jones, R-Tucson, has its roots in unfounded complaints by some losing Republican candidates in the 2022 election that Hobbs put her thumb on the scale for Democratic candidates while serving as secretary of state. Those who accused Hobbs of having a conflict of interest included Kari Lake, who lost her race for governor to Hobbs, and Mark Finchem, who lost his bid to replace Hobbs as Arizona’s top election official to Democrat Adrian Fontes. All Democrats in the Senate voted against the measure, House Bill 2308, as did all House Democrats when it passed out of that chamber in February, saying it was prompted by baseless conspiracy theories.

Arkansas: The House passed a bill that would require the state attorney general to establish and maintain an Election Integrity Unit. House Bill 1513, which also would permit the attorney general to file civil suits for election-related offenses, received a vote of 83-9. The measure, which has the support of Arkansas Attorney General Tim Griffin and 58 co-sponsors in the House, moves to the Senate for further action. The bill’s sponsor, Rep. Austin McCollum, R-Bentonville, said the legislation would codify the Election Integrity Unit, which Griffin has established already, and create a civil cause of action for the attorney general based on already existing criminal violations. “The idea is to give a collateral attack here with a lower burden of proof,” McCollum told House members. HB1513 would allow the attorney general to bring civil action against a person or entity believed to be “engaging, has engaged, or is about to engage in any act or practice declared unlawful” under state election laws. Under the bill, the Election Integrity Unit would be required to track all alleged violations, complaints and investigations related to election integrity in a database. The secretary of state and the State Board of Election Commissioners would have secure access to the database. The Election Integrity Unit under the bill also would oversee the attorney general’s election law violations hotline. The group would have to respond to notifications and complaints regarding alleged violations of voter registration and election laws and refer notifications and complaints to the State Board of Election Commissioners for investigation. The integrity unit also could receive sworn statements and issue subpoenas to compel the production of records and other documents.

Florida: Florida Republicans have dropped a proposal into the state Legislature that would erect even more barriers to voter-registration drives and use of mail-in ballots, along with steeper fines for registration groups that make any wrong steps and the potential that voters could see their ballots trashed. The proposal (SB 7050) reduces the number of days a third-party voter-registration organization has to deliver an application to 10 days, and any day after that they would be fined $50 per each day it is late, up to a maximum of $2,500. For each application delivered after book-closing, meaning the deadline to register in advance of any election, the groups would be fined $100 per each day late, up to a maximum of $5,000. Under existing law, those groups are fined $50 for each application delivered to the division of elections more than 14 days after it was submitted to the third-party organization, and $100 if submitted after book closing. These groups must provide a receipt to each applicant upon accepting possession of the application. And the groups would have to re-register with the state for every single election cycle. Plus, the bill would require all first-time Florida voters who have never been issued a current and valid Florida driver license or a voter ID card or a Social Security number to vote in person the first time. The 98-page committee bill was not published until 2:09 p.m. on April 3, less than 24 hours before it was to be heard for the first time — nearly halfway through the 60-day legislative session. “Prudence” was the reason for the delay in producing the election package, said Danny Burgess, the Republican representing parts of Hillsborough and Pasco counties who’s sponsoring the measure. But he stressed that there’s plenty of time to improve the bill. The Republican-controlled Senate Ethics and Elections Committee signed off on the measure (SPB 7050) in a party-line vote. The House has not released its version of the legislation.

Honolulu, Hawaii: Honolulu Mayor Rick Blangiardi signed a bill into law that establishes firearms-free locations, including schools, hospitals and polling places. The measure was passed in response to a Supreme Court decision that expanded gun rights. Under the new law, concealed-carry weapons won’t be allowed at a hefty list of “sensitive places,” which includes polling places. “Our overriding priority was public safety,” Blangiardi said, at a bill signing ceremony.


Idaho: A proposed amendment to the Idaho Constitution that would have increased the threshold to qualify a ballot initiative or referendum died after failing to get the necessary two-thirds support in the Idaho House of Representatives.   Senate Joint Resolution 101a would have increased the threshold to qualify a ballot initiative or referendum to 6% of the legal voters in each of the state’s 35 legislative districts at the time of the previous general election. That would be up from the current threshold of 6% of voters in 18 of the 35 legislative districts.  Legislators who opposed Senate Joint Resolution 101a said it would have made it functionally impossible to qualify a ballot initiative or referendum for the ballots and given any one legislative district “veto power” over the other 34 districts.

Indiana: Republican-backed proposal that would require Indiana voters to submit more identification information to obtain mail-in ballots was endorsed by the state Senate despite objections from opponents that it would make voting more difficult for many people. Senators voted 36-12 in favor of the bill, which would require voters submitting a paper application for a mail ballot to include a photocopy of a government-issued identification card or at least two ID numbers, such as their 10-digit driver’s license or the last four digits of their Social Security number. Supporters say the measure is aimed at increasing voter confidence in elections by putting Indiana’s ID requirements for mail-in ballots in line with those for in-person voting. Opponents counter that the additional requirements may disenfranchise some people, especially older voters who could find it difficult to navigate the additional requirements and those who aren’t able to print a copy at home of their driver’s license or other photo ID.

Kansas: The Kansas House rejected legislation April 3 authorizing a 2024 presidential primary approved by the Kansas Senate with opponents objecting to the minimum $4 million price tag and the new state filing fee or petition signature requirements of candidates. The House voted 56-64 to sideline House Bill 2053, which was approved by a bipartisan majority of 28-12 in the Senate. It would have given the Republican and Democratic political parties the option of participating in a preference primary March 19, 2024, rather than continue the traditional caucus system whereby Kansans convene across the state to pick partisan winners. However, on April 4, Dozens of the House members flip-flopped to salvage a bill that was easily passed by the Kansas Senate and would authorize expenditure of as much as $5 million to stage a presidential preference primary next March. State representatives soundly criticized House Bill 2053 on Monday before rejecting the measure 56-64 in the GOP-controlled House. Under light of a new day, the House voted 86-32 to adopt the legislation and forward it to Gov. Laura Kelly. The Senate vote had been 28-12, meaning both chambers ended up approving the bill with two-thirds majorities necessary to override a veto by the Democratic governor.

Louisiana: Legislators from St. Tammany and Jefferson parishes have filed bills to lower the recall threshold and eliminate a provision requiring organizers to treat signature sheets as public records. Had it been in place last August, the first bill would have pushed the Cantrell recall well over the signature cutoff, while the second would have spared organizers from having to produce records that provided a window into their opaque campaign. While state Rep. Paul Hollis, of Covington, and Sen. Cameron Henry, of Metairie, are both Republicans, they say their bills aren’t sour grapes over the failure of a recall that targeted a Democratic mayor. Instead, they are designed to address shortcomings in state law, laid bare during the recent recall effort.

Secretary of State Kyle Ardoin previewed his legislative package for the 2023 regular session, which begins next week. The bills would provide “election integrity” for Louisiana, according to Ardoin. House Bill 159, sponsored by Rep. Les Farnum, R-Sulphur, would require parish registrars to conduct an extra voter canvass each year. Under current state law, registrars must conduct a voter canvass every year. The Farnum bill would double their work.  Winn Parish Registrar of Voters Bryan Kelley, who’s president of the Louisiana Registrars of Voters Association, said a canvass is a way to keep the voter rolls as accurate as possible. House Bill 311, sponsored by Rep. Blake Miguez, R-Erath, is a constitutional amendment that would prohibit election officials from accepting private donations to pay for things such as tents, signs and other items used on election days. This year’s bill is markedly different as it suggests a connection between Zuckerberg and foreign governments. In previous years, the bill’s plain language prohibited donations from “profit or nonprofit corporations.” This year’s version instead frames such donations as “funds, goods or services donated by a foreign government or a nongovernmental source,” suggesting that foreign countries tried to corrupt local election officials in Louisiana. House Bill 361, by Rep. Daryl Deshotel, R-Marksville, that would prohibit the use of TikTok on state devices or networks. Ardoin, Gov. John Bel Edwards and state Education Superintendent Cade Brumley have already banned the application from state-owned devices.  House Bill 135, by Rep. Mike Johnson, R-Pineville, would prohibit registered sex offenders from serving as election commissioners. The proposal follows a recommendation from the state Board of Election Commissioners. House Bill 216, by Rep. Dodie Horton, R-Houghton, would allow for military members and their dependents stationed in Louisiana to serve as election commissioners. House Bill 174, by Rep. Julie Emerson, would protect the personal, identifiable information of active duty military members and their dependents who request absentee election ballots from being released in a public records request.

Nevada: Senate Bill 405 aims to make several changes to elections. It would require voters to show ID when voting, including providing their driver’s license number or the last four digits of their social security number when they cast a mail-in ballot. It also requires the DMV to issue voter identification cards free of charge to voters who need them. Voters would also have to opt-in instead of automatically receiving a mail-in ballot. And it moves up the deadline for when mail-in ballots must be returned. Nearly three-quarters of Nevada voters support showing ID to vote, including 62% of Democrats, according to an early February poll by O.H. Predictive Insights and The Nevada Independent.

Under AB246, sponsored by Assemblywoman Selena Torres (D-Las Vegas) and 20 other lawmakers, county election officials would be required to make voting materials available in the language of a given minority group if there are at least 5,000 “voting age citizens” in the county who are members of that minority group and are of “limited-English proficiency.” The measure would expand on a section of the federal Voting Rights Act that requires states and counties to provide language assistance during elections for groups who are unable to speak or understand English well enough to participate in the electoral process, if the number of voting age citizens from that group is greater than 10,000 or 5 percent of the voting age population. Under that law, Clark County is required to provide materials in Spanish and Tagalog, and Nye County is required to provide materials in Shoshone. “Every Nevadan has a fundamental right to participate in the electoral process,” Torres said during a hearing of the bill Tuesday. “However, this right is often restricted for limited-English proficient Nevadans due to language barriers that discourage them from participating in the process.”  Under an amendment presented by Torres on Tuesday, the threshold for non-English language ballot materials would be cut in half, requiring election materials be provided in Chinese in Clark County and in Spanish in Washoe County, which already voluntarily provides ballots in Spanish.

Lawmakers heard a bill that would expand already-existing voting rights to pretrial detainees in jails, marking the latest effort to make voting easier for pretrial detainees that is playing out in different forms nationwide. The bill would make an electronic absentee ballot system available to pretrial detainees that is currently tailored toward military, disabled or overseas voters. It also streamlines a process for same-day voter registration for those eligible in county and city jails, which is already offered in some counties but would streamline it at the state level. A sweeping amendment \ pared down the bill’s focus away from establishing physical polling places in city and county jails and instead toward ensuring — and in some cases expanding — absentee ballot access for those already eligible. “We are simply ensuring that eligible electors have the ability to vote in the same early, special, primary and general elections that they would have had the opportunity to vote in had they not been temporarily incarcerated,” said bill sponsor Democratic Assemblywoman Brittney Miller, of Las Vegas.

New Hampshire: The Senate has unanimously backed a proposal that would ask voters of the Granite State to enshrine New Hampshire’s first-in-the-nation presidential primary in the state’s constitution. The proposal comes as the Democratic National Committee is poised to put South Carolina at the head of the nominating queue. Under the proposed amendment, language that mirrors current state law dictating the scheduling of presidential primary would be inserted into the constitution. The amendment reads: “The secretary of state shall ensure that the presidential primary election be held seven or more days immediately preceding the date on which any other state shall hold a similar election.” The proposal is the Senate leadership’s response to the DNC-backed calendar change. Under the DNC proposal, which is expected to be finalized this summer, New Hampshire could still vote second in the primary calendar, on the same day as Nevada. To make it into the constitution, this proposal will need to win three-fifths support in the New Hampshire House and two-thirds support from voters in 2024.

New Mexico: Gov Michelle Lujan Grisham (D) has signed a voting rights bill into law. Under New Mexico’s legislation, automatic voter registration will be provided for U.S. citizens during transactions at state motor vehicle offices and voting rights will be restored to felons immediately after incarceration. It also will streamline the distribution of absentee ballots that can be returned by mail and make absentee ballot voting easier for Native Americans living in remote stretches of tribal land. Under the bill, Native American communities also would have greater flexibility in designating voting locations, including ballot drop boxes. Some tribal residents were cut off from polling locations by local emergency lockdowns during the COVID-19 pandemic. Statewide, county clerks will distribute absentee ballots automatically in every election to people who sign up for the service. Before now, voters had to request an absentee ballot with each election in a voting process that can involve three or four mail deliveries. The law also will require that each of New Mexico’s 33 counties maintain at least two monitored ballot drop boxes. County clerks can request an exemption.

The governor also signed a bill that makes permanent the secretary of state’s election security program and increases compensation for election workers. The other measure signed is aimed at addressing the safety of election workers and officials. Under the legislation, the crime of intimidation will now include acts against employees and agents of the secretary of state’s office, county clerk offices, municipal clerks and election officials themselves.  Secretary of State Maggie Toulouse Oliver, a Democrat, said she believes the three bills balance voter access protections with maintaining election security.

North Carolina: A GOP-sponsored bill that passed 14-7 in the House Election Law Committee would remove the state’s three-day grace period after an election for an absentee by-mail ballot to arrive and set a 7:30 p.m. cutoff on Election Day for county boards to accept absentee ballots, regardless of postmark.  All absentee by-mail ballots would have to be submitted at a county board of elections office, whether by mail or in person, and could not be turned in at a one-stop early voting site. The measure would not apply to military or overseas absentee ballots. It must also pass the House Rules Committee before reaching the floor for a vote. While Republican sponsors, like Rep. Ted Davis of New Hanover County, say the change is needed to restore trust in elections, critics say it would disenfranchise lawful voters of all parties. Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper successfully vetoed a similar proposal in 2021, saying the bill “virtually guarantees that some (votes) will go uncounted.”

North Dakota: Senate lawmakers passed House Bill 1273 , which would prohibit rank-choice voting and approval voting systems throughout the state of North Dakota, including Fargo where the last two elections have utilized approval voting.  The vote passed 33-13, and with the House’s 74-19 vote on Feb. 15, clears the two-thirds majority threshold needed to override a potential veto from Gov. Doug Burgum. An amendment to the bill to grandfather Fargo’s approval voting system failed in the House. Defenders of approval voting, which became law in Fargo behind a 2018 ballot measure, said it was another example of government overreach. Mayor Tim Mahoney said he was very disappointed by the bill’s passing, which he defined as a substantial loss for the “longstanding respect for Home Rule authority and local control.” “Approval voting was enacted in Fargo by the people, not the elected officials. In fact, over 30,000 Fargo voters (64% of those casting ballots) supported approval voting after a successful initiated measure campaign. Today’s actions silence those Fargo voters,” Mahoney said.

House Bill 1167 , by Rep. Steve Vetter, R-Grand Forks, passed in a 39-5 vote and now goes to Gov. Doug Burgum. The state House of Representatives in February passed the bill unanimously. The bill states: “The governor may not issue an executive order that suspends or amends a provision in a statute, order, or rule relating to a state or local requirement regarding minimum number of physical polling places.” Burgum in 2020 signed an executive order waiving the requirement that counties provide at least one physical polling site for the June 2020 election due to the coronavirus pandemic. The House and Senate in 2021 had passed the previous bill, but the Senate reconsidered it and it failed by a single vote.

Tennessee: A bill requiring every Tennessee polling place to display signs saying it is a crime to vote in a primary without being a bona fide party member advanced Tuesday in the legislature.  The bill’s sponsor, Sen. Mark Pody, R-Lebanon, said the intent of the bill (SB0978/HB0828) is to “remind people they have to vote in the proper political party that they’re in.”  But Sen. Jeff Yarbro, D-Nashville, questioned whether such signage could discourage people from voting. Yarbro noted the state does not require any formal party registration in order to vote in primaries and such signage could serve to wrongly signal to voters that they had failed to take a necessary step before voting. The proposed law requires yellow signs to be prominently displayed at each voting site that warn voters that casting a ballot in a political party’s primary without being a member of, or affiliated with, that party is a Class C misdemeanor.  Tennessee currently has open primaries; voters aren’t required to register with a political party in order to vote, leaving it to voters to self-declare their party affiliation and vote in the primary of their choosing.  State law specifies a voter may cast a ballot in a primary who is a “bona fide member of and affiliated with the political party in whose primary the voter seeks to vote” or “at the time the voter seeks to vote, the voter declares allegiance” to that party.  A violation of the law is a Class C misdemeanor, which comes with a punishment of up to 30 days in jail and/or a fine of up to $50.

Texas: The Texas Senate Committee on State Affairs passed a bill regarding countywide polls to the senate floor on Thursday. SB 990 was presented to the committee, where it was discussed and left pending. The bill, written by Sen. Bob Hall (R-Edgewood), would eliminate countywide polling places, which are polls where county residents may vote regardless of precinct. This bill would restrict voting location to the voter’s precinct, rather than allowing them to vote in designated polls across the county. The bill passed the committee with a vote of eight ayes and two nays. It will be reported favorably to the full senate, and is left pending at this time.

Texans could be on a “suspense list” if they fail to vote in two consecutive federal elections under a controversial bill a Senate panel. Voter registrars would have to check whether Texans had moved if they skipped casting ballots in that time, according to the proposal. Currently, registrars don’t place someone on such a list, which can lead to registration being canceled, unless a voter registration certificate is returned in the mail. County officials mail the postcard-like document in January of odd-numbered years. Under Brenham GOP Sen. Lois Kolkhorst’s Senate Bill 260, the address-verification process instead would be triggered by a voter’s inactivity. The panel sent the bill to the full Senate, 8-2.

Legal Updates

Federal Litigation: Delaware Superior Court Judge Eric M. Davis ruled that Dominion Voting Systems’ defamation suit against Fox News over baseless claims it had cheated former President Donald Trump of victory in the 2020 elections could proceed to trial.  In addition, Davis ruled that Dominion had already proved the contested statements’ falsity. The jury that is scheduled to be seated in the trial in several weeks won’t have to weigh their validity; instead, the judge will instruct them that they are false. “The evidence developed in this civil proceeding demonstrates that [it] is CRYSTAL clear that none of the Statements relating to Dominion about the 2020 election are true,” Davis wrote in a 80-page decision notable for the tough stance it took against Fox’s legal defense. That means Dominion can now publicly say the allegations made on numerous Fox broadcasts about the election company have been declared by a court of law to be false. In a further instance, Davis ruled against Fox’s argument of a “neutral reporting” privilege that protects it from any liability if it accurately conveys the allegations of newsworthy people. The network’s lawyers say it was covering inherently newsworthy claims about a national election made by inherently newsworthy people – a sitting president and his lawyers and surrogates.  Davis utterly rejected that approach, as a matter of law and a matter of the facts in this case.

Arizona: Further hearings of the suit filed against the Cochise County Board of Supervisors by the state Attorney General Office will be held in Pima County following a change of venue hearing. Santa Cruz Superior Court Judge Thomas Fink made the ruling and said he was required to change the venue when asked. He granted the state request for the change of venue, though not to the location sought by Solicitor General Joshua D. Bendor, who represents Attorney General Kris Mayes. The state had requested the case be heard in Maricopa County Superior Court. The judge also stated he had wanted to oversee the court proceedings, and had no intention of handing the case off to another judge if that was the reason the change of location was requested. “I want the case,” Fink said. Bendor told Fink they wanted the case to be moved to Maricopa County to save taxpayer money for travel from Phoenix to Bisbee. He also said Maricopa County’s technology to stream the hearings was better. “The state statute allows a case to be moved to a more convenient location.”

Colorado: Judicial Watch has come to terms with the Colorado Secretary of State’s office in a lawsuit over its voter registration list maintenance practice after years of litigation. The suit alleged that Sec. Jena Griswold violated the National Voter Registration Act by failing to remove ineligible voters from the state’s rolls. That discrepancy led to artificially high registration rates in many counties, the lawsuit claimed. As a part of its agreement to dismiss the case, Griswold denied all claims that Colorado violated federal laws that govern voter roll maintenance. But her office agreed to provide Judicial Watch with public data from a federal survey on an annual basis for the next five years. “We have a very rigorous list maintenance process and I do not believe that this litigation is about anything based in fact,” Griswold said.  Her office settled the lawsuit to prevent “further unnecessary drain” on state resources, she said. She also characterized the lawsuit as a meritless attack on democracy. “Election disinformation continues to plague the nation and Colorado, and organizations like Judicial Watch share responsibility for the ongoing threats to democracy,” she said.

Illinois: Will County Judge John Anderson dismissed an election fraud case filed by the losing candidate in the 2022 race for Will County clerk that claimed mathematic formulas showed the final vote count was fraudulent. Republican Gretchen Fritz filed the lawsuit Dec. 28, claiming she believes “mistakes and fraud have been committed in the casting and counting of ballots” in the race because her opponent, Democratic Will County Clerk Lauren Staley Ferry, received more votes than Democratic Gov. J.B. Pritzker. Anderson wrote the case “is, in sum and substance, an attack on the legitimacy and security of our elections.” “Setting aside the electorate’s voice in the County Clerk’s race based on how many votes someone else got in some other race, and based on mathematical probability analyses would disenfranchise all voters who voted and who did nothing wrong in exercising their right to vote,” Anderson wrote. The judge said Fritz sought “an extraordinary remedy to match her extraordinary claims” by asking the court to declare the Will County clerk’s office vacant and order a new election conducted with only paper ballots that are hand counted.

Virginia: Richmond Circuit Court Judge Claire G. Cardwell has ordered the state to hold a Republican primary in a Suffolk-area state Senate contest, ruling in favor of a GOP official who accused Gov. Glenn Youngkin’s chief of staff and Attorney General Jason S. Miyares of pressuring the state elections chief into canceling it in favor of a convention. Cardwell ordered state Elections Commissioner Susan Beals to once again schedule the June GOP primary that had been announced earlier this month but then called off. Beals confirmed that she will do so. “The judge has ruled and we will issue an updated order [for a primary],” Beals said in an email to The Washington Post. In a lawsuit filed this month, a GOP party official from the city of Suffolk claims that Miyares (R) and Youngkin’s chief of staff, Jeff Goettman, “aggressively upbraided” and “bullied” Beals to change the nomination method for an open, Suffolk-area state Senate seat from a primary to a convention. Youngkin, Goettman and Miyares have declined to comment on those claims. They were not defendants in the suit, which names only Beals, the state Department of Elections and the state Board of Elections.

Opinions This Week

National Opinions: Fox News | Ranked choice voting

Alaska: Ranked choice voting

Arizona: Ranked choice voting

California: Election legislation

Florida: Election legislation

Kansas: Court rulings

Louisiana: Secretary of state | Recall | Ranked choice voting

Minnesota: Ranked choice voting, II | Automatic voter registration

Montana: Ranked choice voting

Nevada: Election legislation, II

North Carolina: Noncitizen voting | Voting rights

Ohio: Voter education | Lorain County

Pennsylvania: Election security |Voter ID

Texas: List maintenance | Online voter registration

Virginia: Ex-felon voting rights, II

Washington: Ranked choice voting

Upcoming Events

U.S. Election Assistance Commission Standards Board Annual Meeting: This meeting is in-person and open to the public. This meeting is to conduct an annual review the VVSG 2.0 Requirements and  implementation, review the status of the EAC’s e-poll book pilot program, discuss ongoing EAC programs, and address election official security and mental health concerns. This meeting will include a question and answer discussion between board members and EAC staff. Board members will also review FACA Board membership guidelines and policies with EAC Acting General Counsel and receive a general update about the EAC programing. The Board will also elect nine members to the Executive Board Committee. Background: On February 10, 2021 the U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) announced the adoption of the Voluntary Voting System Guidelines (VVSG) 2.0, the fifth iteration of national level voting system standards. The Federal Election Commission published the first two sets of federal standards in 1990 and 2002. The EAC then adopted Version 1.0 of the VVSG on December 13, 2005. In an effort to update and improve version 1.0 of the VVSG, on March 31, 2015, the EAC commissioners unanimously approved VVSG 1.1. HAVA designates a 110-member Standards Board to assist EAC in carrying out its mandates under the law. The board consists of 55 state election officials selected by their respective chief state election official, and 55 local election officials selected through a process supervised by the chief state election official. When: April 18-19. Where: Phoenix, AZ.

Disinformation Nation: How Partisan Politicians Distort History: Misinformation is on the rise. From cable news to social media, we’re very aware that what we’re hearing or reading could be wrong. And it seems our skepticism of the right’s version of current events should extend to our history as well. A new book, Myth America: Historians Take On the Biggest Legends and Lies About Our Past, dispels many of the myths being pushed about our country’s past. In a collection of 20 essays from top historians, edited by Kevin Kruse and Julian Zelizer, this important text shows how those on the right have used revisionist history to fan the flames of politicization and unravel the seams of democracy.  Join us for a live virtual conversation on Thursday, April 20, at 6 p.m. ET with historians featured in the book, Yale University law and political science professor Akhil Reed Amar, Emory University African American Studies professor Carol Anderson, and Northwestern University associate professor Kathleen Belew, as well as editors and Princeton professors Kevin Kruse and Julian Zelizer. Where: Online. When: April 20 at 6 pm Eastern.

2023 EAC Board of Advisors Annual Meeting: This meeting is to conduct an annual review the VVSG 2.0 Requirements and implementation, review the status of the EAC’s e-poll book pilot program, discuss ongoing EAC programs, and address election official security and mental health concerns. This meeting will include a question and answer discussion between board members and EAC staff.  Board members will also review FACA Board membership guidelines and policies with EAC Acting General Counsel and receive a general update about the EAC programing. The Board will also elect three members to Executive Officer positions and consider amendments to the Bylaws.  Background: On February 10, 2021 the U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) announced the adoption of the Voluntary Voting System Guidelines (VVSG) 2.0, the fifth iteration of national level voting system standards. The Federal Election Commission published the first two sets of federal standards in 1990 and 2002. The EAC then adopted Version 1.0 of the VVSG on December 13, 2005. In an effort to update and improve version 1.0 of the VVSG, on March 31, 2015, the EAC commissioners unanimously approved VVSG 1.1. Where: Washington, DC. When: April 25-26.

U.S. Election Assistance Commission Public Meeting: Please join the U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) for a public discussion about serving military and UOCAVA voters. Where: Online. When: April 26 at 1pm Eastern.

Election Center Special Workshop: Courses offered will include: Course 9 (History III – 1965 to Present), Course 10 (Constitutional Law of Elections, renewal) and Course 15 (Training in Elections: Reaching All Levels). When: April 27-30. Where: Houston.

ERSA 2023 Conference:  The 7th Annual Summer Conference on Election Science, Reform, and Administration (ESRA) will be held in person from Wednesday, May 31 to Friday, June 2, at the University of Georgia in Athens, Georgia.  Details about this year’s conference program are forthcoming. When: May 31-June 2. Where: Atlanta

State Certification Testing of Election Systems National Conference: This year’s State Certification Testing of Election Systems National Conference (SCTESNC), hosted by Pro V&V, Inc., will be held at Huntsville Marriott at the U.S. Space and Rocket Center. The purpose of the conference is to share ideas and solutions for ensuring voting and election system reliability, transparency, and integrity through better testing of systems. The 2023 conference will feature a panel discussion on risk-limiting audits by leading national experts in the field. The primary goal of the conference is to provide a venue for practitioners and academics to share best practices for voting system testing and management, to explore more efficient and effective methods for testing and implementing voting and election systems, and to identify common challenges and potential mitigation to those challenges. Additionally, the conference is meant to be a vehicle to improve the flow of information between the federal, state, county, and municipality testing entities. This is a working conference with expectations that all attendees prepare a paper, presentation, panel discussion, or other activity to share ideas and innovations in the testing of voting and election systems.  First-time attendees may waive the paper presentation requirements. This year, in lieu of an overarching theme, the conference organizers invite those attending to submit proposed topic presentations on any issue of importance related to the certification and testing of election systems. Attendance is open for all individuals engaged in the testing and certification of voting and election systems for government jurisdictions.  When: June 12-13. Where: Huntsville, Alabama

NASS 2023 Summer Conference: The National Association of Secretaries of State will hold its summer conference in Washington, D.C. Registration will be open in May. Check back for more details. When: July 9-12. Where: Washington, DC.

NACo Annual Conference: The National Association of Counties (NACo) Annual Conference & Expo is the largest meeting of county elected and appointed officials from across the country. Participants from counties of all sizes come together to shape NACo’s federal policy agenda, share proven practices and strengthen knowledge networks to help improve residents’ lives and the efficiency of county government.  When: July 21-24. Where: Travis County, Texas.

Election Center National Conference: The National Association of Election Officials (The Election Center) will hold its 38th Annual Conference in Orlando, Florida in late August. In addition to the conference, CERA courses and renewal courses will be offered. Check back for more information. When: Aug. 26-30. Where: Orlando, Florida

Job Postings This Week

electionlineWeekly publishes election administration job postings each week as a free service to our readers. To have your job listed in the newsletter, please send a copy of the job description, including a web link to mmoretti@electionline.org.  Job postings must be received by 5pm on Wednesday in order to appear in the Thursday newsletter. Listings will run for three weeks or till the deadline listed in the posting.

Administrative Specialist II (Elections Specialist – Chinese), King County Elections— This is an amazing opportunity to be engaged in the election process! This benefits-eligible Term-Limited Temporary (TLT) position is anticipated to last until December 2024. A Special Duty Assignment may be considered for King County Career Service employees who have passed their initial probationary period.  The Department of Elections – is searching for energetic and resourceful professionals who like to “get stuff done”. The Administrative Specialist II positions in the Voter Services Department combines an exciting, fast-paced environment with the opportunity to cultivate talents and apply a variety of skills. The ideal candidate will have a desire to help ensure the democratic process through public service. They will thrive in an innovative environment and will not hesitate to roll up both sleeves, work hard, have fun, and get the job done. King County Elections (KCE) manages voter registrations and elections for more than 1.4 million voters in King County, the largest vote-by-mail county in the United States. KCE’s mission is to conduct accessible, secure, and accurate elections. As a leader in providing inclusive elections, KCE is focused on three key priorities – (1) actively identifying and working to remove barriers to voting at both the individual and community level, (2) strengthening relationships with community and governmental partners, and (3) creating a culture of professional growth and development, openness and inclusion.  Salary: $24.59 – $31.30 Hourly. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

Assistant County Clerk-Recorder, Nevada County, California— Under administrative oversight you can be assisting with planning, organizing, directing and leading the activities of the County Clerk-Recorder’s office! The Assistant Clerk-Recorder will provide highly sophisticated staff assistance to the Clerk-Recorder! This management classification position serves at the will of the County Clerk-Recorder, and acts on her behalf in her absence and provides full line and functional management responsibility for the department’s Recorder and Election divisions. This position is distinguished from the County Clerk-Recorder in that the latter is an elected position and has overall responsibility for all functions of the department. Salary range: $111,810 – $136,500. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

Assistant Manager-Poll Worker Department, Palm Beach County, Florida— The Palm Beach County Supervisor of Elections is looking for an experienced Assistant Poll Worker Department Manager. In this role, you will oversee the planning and the completion of various projects, administrative functions, operations, and specialized tasks in the Poll Worker Department. The work involves knowledge and application of departmental operations, planning, assigning responsibilities, monitoring election worker classes, maintaining records, evaluating performance, and the ability to review work for accuracy. This position requires initiative and sound independent judgement in the application of office policies, election laws, and procedures. Must be personable and maintain effective working relationships with colleagues, associates, and the general public. All work is performed under the guidance of the Supervisor of Elections. The ideal candidate will have an excellent work ethic, including consistent performance, reliability, and attendance. The desire and ability to work well in a fast-paced collaborative environment with a smile are essential to the position. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

Associate Director, Political Science, MIT Election Data and Science Lab— To serve in a leadership role by working with the faculty director to develop and implement an expanded strategic vision of MEDSL and to manage operations and administration of the lab’s activities. Will bear primary responsibility for ensuring that the lab’s activities are responsive to the most pressing needs of election administrators throughout the United States and for maintaining robust lines of communication with election officials and allied research institutions. MEDSL is dedicated to the creation of knowledge, insights, and data necessary to increase understanding and guide improvement of elections as they are conducted in the United States. Required: bachelor’s degree; five years’ direct experience working in election administration or election science (which may have been acquired through work as a state or local administrator, leader of a nonprofit organization, or academic researcher); tactical and strategic approach to responsibilities; excellent problem-solving, organizational, project management, and written and verbal communication and presentation skills; organizational and cultural awareness; diplomacy and good judgment;  initiative; interest in contributing to the progress of scientific research by facilitating the work of others; discretion and judgment with confidential information/issues; and proficiency with Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.  Must be able to achieve big picture results while paying attention to detail; follow through and achieve objectives in a timely manner; keep teams, projects, and deliverables on track; coordinate multiple tasks, set priorities, deliver results, and meet deadlines; exert influence, negotiate, and work across boundaries; and work independently and collaboratively. Preferred: graduate degree in law, political science, public policy, public administration, management, or related field. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

Board of Elections Training Specialist, Wake County, North Carolina— Are you looking to get involved in your community? Do you want to make a difference? Are you passionate about learning? If so, get ready to roll up your sleeves and become part of something bigger! The Wake County Board of Elections is currently seeking an experienced Instructional Designer/Training Specialist to join our dynamic and driven Training Team. The ideal candidate will be a strong communicator who thrives in a fast paced, ever changing work environment. They will have a clear understanding of the commonly accepted instructional design models, what it takes to be a behind the scenes designer, have a strong visual sense and excellent project management skills. What will you do as a Board of Elections Training Specialist? Develop training materials, including classroom presentations, manuals, workbooks, training videos and online training modules to facilitate comprehensive training for Early Voting and Election Day Officials; Review, evaluate and modify existing and proposed programs and recommend changes; Create schedules, design layouts for training facilities and adjust room layouts as necessary between in-person classes; Train and manage instructors and assistants for in-person training classes; Serve as instructor for some online webinars and in-person classes; Collaborate with team members to gain knowledge of work processes, identify training needs and establish plans to address the needs through training solutions; Identify innovative training tools and methods to enhance the training program; Monitor and assess election law changes and incorporate the changes into polling place procedures; Develop and design election forms, precinct official website, newsletters, assessments and other communications; Develop high level design documents, storyboards, audio narration scripts, status reporting, QA and testing plans; Assists with Early Voting site setups and call center support; Assists with Election Day call center support and post-election processes; and Portfolios will be required by all applicants who are selected to move forward in the recruitment process. Salary: $27.10 – $28.10.  Application: For the complete listing and to apply, click here.

Chief Deputy Registrar of Voters, San Bernardino, California— The San Bernardino County Registrar of Voters seeks a dynamic and innovative administrator who can lead and thrive in a fast-paced environment to manage our elections programs, processes, and team.  The Chief Deputy Registrar of Voters is a forward-thinking individual that assists with guiding the future direction of the department and its processes, taking a hands-on approach to find solutions while working collaboratively with a knowledgeable and dedicated team. The Chief Deputy Registrar of Voters is a key member of the Department’s senior management team, participating in organizational strategic planning and administering election programs. The position serves as a Chief over a division of the Registrar of Voters (ROV) office and has primary responsibility for assisting the ROV in planning, conducting, and certifying all Primary, General, and Special elections. Salary: $85,425.60 – $118,684.80. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

Chief Information Officer, Illinois State Board of Elections— Functions as Chief Information Officer (CIO) of the SBE Information Technology Systems.  Responsibilities encompass full range of information services; application design and development, system administration, data administration, operations, production control, and data communications. In conjunction with the Board, Executive Director, and Executive staff, the CIO determines the role of information systems in achieving Board goals.  Defines goals in terms of statutory obligations to be met, problems to be solved, and/or opportunities that can be realized through the application of computerized information systems.    Prepares and submits budget based projections of hardware, software, staff and other resource needs to adequately provide for existing systems, as well as support of new project initiatives.   Advises Executive Staff in matters relating to information technology.  Develops presentations and reports for the Board and Administrative Staff.  In conjunction with Executive Staff, evaluates system performance to determine appropriate enhancements. Salary: $7,885 – $13,237 Monthly. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

Communications Director, NonproftVote— Are you a seasoned communications professional concerned about the state of our democracy? Do you believe in the power of nonprofits and nonpartisan voter engagement? If so, we have an opportunity to put your skills to work in a mission-driven environment to foster a more engaged and inclusive democracy. Nonprofit VOTE equips our nation’s nonprofits with nonpartisan tools and resources to help the communities they serve participate in voting and democracy. In doing so, we seek to close participation gaps among populations underrepresented in the political process. Additionally, Nonprofit VOTE manages the collaborative work of National Voter Registration Day, a single day of coordinated field, technology, and media strategies to raise awareness of voter registration opportunities and help hundreds of thousands of Americans register to vote. Working within a small, collaborative, and flexible team, your role as Communications Director will be to lead the communications of both Nonprofit VOTE and National Voter Registration Day. Our communications seek to weave a narrative around successful voter engagement efforts, highlighting key partners and traditionally underrepresented communities, while distributing practical advice and tools on how nonprofits can more effectively engage their communities. Salary: $75,000 and $90,000. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

Contract Sales Professional, Vidaloop— We’re looking for a contract sales professional, experienced in elections, to join our team’s effort to increase accessibility and security for UOCAVA voters and voters with disabilities. We are a young but experienced company looking to expand our footprint in the remote accessible ballot marking field. This is the perfect position for a retired professional or somebody with an established set of contacts looking for part time work. Responsibilities: Prospect, develop and grow relationships with states, counties and municipalities for contracts and pilot implementations; Attend a few election conferences (this can be negotiated); Track and report all sales activities; and Collaborate with our team to prospect new business and assist in developing an operational team to meet and exceed customers expectations. Application: For more information and to apply, click here.

Digital and Multimedia Specialist, Issue One— The Digital and Multimedia Specialist (DMS) will play an integral role in expanding Issue One’s reach by producing and promoting multimedia content (including in-house video),  managing and growing Issue One’s social media footprint, including Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, TikTok, and Instagram, running Issue One’s fundraising and action email list. The DMS will be proficient at video production and help Issue One reach new and larger audiences through video messaging, social media, and digital storytelling. The individual will also support key functions of the communications team, working closely with the communications director, senior communications manager, and communications specialist. The ideal candidate will possess a strong understanding of digital and multimedia strategies and tools needed to reach wider audiences and grow the organization’s brand in a competitive digital climate. Salary: $58K-$70K. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

Director of Elections, Cumberland County, North Carolina— The Elections Director works under the administrative direction of the County Board of Elections and Executive Director of the State Board of Election. The Elections Director performs professional, managerial, and administrative work for the Board of Elections and carries out all duties or responsibilities as assigned by Chapter 163 of the General Statutes of the State of North Carolina and as delegated by members of the County Board in accordance with the laws of the State of North Carolina, GS 163-35 (d) and 163-33.  Reports to the Chairman of the Cumberland County Board of Elections. Salary: $78,784.40 – $132,425.23. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

Division Director, Illinois State Board of Elections— Subject to Executive Director approval; oversees the administration of human resource programs including, but not limited to, compensation, payroll, benefits, and leave; disciplinary matters; disputes and investigations; performance and talent management; productivity, recognition, and morale; occupational health and safety; and training and development. Serves as the Board’s subject matter expert relating to personnel and human resource matters. Identifies staffing and recruiting needs; develops and executes best practices for hiring and talent management. Conducts research and analysis of Board trends including review of reports and metrics from human resource information systems. Recommends, implements, and ensures compliance with agency policies and procedures including, but not limited to, hiring, disciplinary actions, employee grievances, compensation plan, and employee performance evaluations. Creates and oversees human resource practices, programs, and objectives that provide for an employee-oriented culture that emphasizes collaboration, innovation, creativity, and knowledge transfer within a diverse team. Oversees the day-to-day administrative aspects of the Board’s personnel programs; accuracy of bi-monthly payrolls; benefits; quarterly and annual EEO/AA reporting; and, employee transaction documentation. Facilitates professional development, training, and certification activities for staff; development and maintenance of agency-wide training programs for on-boarding, staff development, and knowledge transfer. Responsible for the administration and oversight over all disciplinary matters; including: investigation of complaints; conducting witness interviews; documentation gathering; drafting and submittal of investigation findings to Executive Staff; advising Division Directors and Executive Staff on disciplinary matters; and, drafting of formal disciplinary reprimands in accordance with policy. Has administrative oversight of the Chief Fiscal Officer regarding budgetary and fiscal matters under the purview of the Division of Administrative Services. Supervises and evaluates subordinate staff; facilitates knowledge transfers and cross trainings; performs other duties as required or assigned which are reasonably within the scope of the duties enumerated above. Salary: $6,023.00 – $12,374.00 Monthly. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

Election Certification & Training Program Manager, Washington Secretary of State’s Office—   The Elections Certification & Training Program Manager reports to the Deputy Director of Elections and is responsible for managing the Certification and Training team. Certification and Training is a mission critical program established and required by RCW 29A.04.530, 29A.04.560, 29A.04.590. The Certification and Training Manager develops and manages program objectives and priorities, in collaboration with external stakeholders including independently elected auditors and election officials. Additionally, the Program Manager makes collaborative strategic judgments and decisions balancing competing program demands or priorities for resources; develops, modifies, and implements division policy; formulates long-range strategic plans and projects . The Certification and Training Manager also integrates division and office policies and reviews the program for compliance with policies and strategic objectives. The position is responsible for four mission critical functions: Professional certification and training of local and state election administrators and county canvassing board members. Review of county election operations and procedures. Testing of all vote tabulation equipment used in each county during state primary and general elections. The election clearinghouse and publication program. The Program Manager also manages the process for adopting state rules and is the Election Division’s liaison with the USPS. Salary: $83,000 – $93,000. Application: For the complete job application and to apply, click here.

Election Director, Ohio Secretary of State’s Office— The Ohio Secretary of State Elections Division is recruiting for a Director of the Elections Division. The Director of the Elections Division (often called the Elections Director) oversees a team responsible for one of the Office’s two main functions: the oversight of local, state, and federal elections. The director serves as the Office’s primary liaison to Ohio’s 88 county boards of elections and, under the general direction of the Chief of Staff, leads the strategic planning and daily management of the division, including the following duties: Supervises division employees, including the enforcement of workplace policies, periodic review of performance, and recommendations for compensation and promotion; Oversees the issuance of advisories and directives that inform boards of changes to state election laws and sets uniform standards and policies by which elections are conducted; Develops and executes a detailed plan to manage the division’s work product in support of all timelines and deadlines associated with the annual elections calendar; Helps to develop and administer the division’s operational budget to ensure adequate levels of statewide support for the Office’s objectives; Provides daily support to boards of elections, including troubleshooting and training, as well as assistance as needed with administrative functions such as voting operations, poll worker recruitment, records processing and retention, post-election auditing, budgeting, legal compliance, and all other expectations established in the Secretary of State’s Election Official Manual; Reviews feedback from the Office’s regional operations teams and provides follow-up and support as needed; Determines the forms of ballots, poll books, voter instruction notices, and other forms relevant to the administration of elections; Oversees the collection, organization and review of statewide initiative and referendum petitions; Coordinates the meetings and direction of the Ohio Board of Voting Machine Examiners and the Ohio Ballot Board; Assists in the development and implementation of election-related public policy; Supports the Office’s legal staff in fulfilling public records requests, addressing litigation, and supporting law enforcement inquiries; Frequently briefs the Secretary of State and Chief of Staff on all relevant developments impacting the administration of elections in Ohio; Advises on vendor and consultant contracts; Assists the Office’s Information Technology team with election data retention and analysis efforts, including maintenance of voter registration records, investigations of fraud and irregularities, and publication of election statistics; Communicates with advocacy groups and election officials seeking guidance on the Office’s directives, advisories, or strategic policy initiatives; Represents the Secretary of State as needed in meetings, hearings, conferences, and other functions related to election administration; Seeks opportunities to strengthen the influence and visibility of the Office with election officials, advocacy groups, and influencers; Assists with the development of the Office’s communication content to intergovernmental contacts and third-party stakeholders; Manages the logistical planning and execution of the Office’s statewide Election Night Reporting operation, which includes the collection, tracking, tabulation, and reporting of election data from boards of elections to an official website for public consumption; Assists the Office’s legal staff in ensuring compliance with applicable rules, disclosures, and filings relating to lobbying and ethics laws; Collaborates with the Office’s External Affairs, Business Services, and Public Integrity divisions to support their respective objectives, including the development of public voter awareness campaigns, informational publications, website content, and other communications content; and Otherwise supports the Secretary of State and the Office of the Secretary of State in complying with all statutory obligations set forth under Ohio Revised Code Section 3501.05, “Election duties of secretary of state.” Salary: $125K-$140K. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

Election Review Specialist, Washington Secretary of State’s Office— This Program Specialist 4 reports to the Certification and Training Program Manager and is responsible for overseeing the County Review Program which reviews the policies and procedures of Washington County Election Departments roughly every 5 years for compliance with state and federal election law.  This collaborative process is intended to support local election officials, share best practices and is one of the reasons Washington State Election Administration is ranked highest in the nation. Salary: $57,324 – $77,028. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

Election Services Manager, Contra Costa County, California— Contra Costa County has more than 700,000 registered voters and a population of 1.1 million. Located in the San Francisco Bay Area, Contra Costa County offers a great salary and benefits in addition to a collaborative and fast-paced work environment. Our office is vital to our democracy and our community, and we love to help our residents. Our leadership values employee development and engagement, promotes open and transparent communication, prepares us to be a high-performing organization, and recognizes the contributions of others. We connect with the community, listen to them, and provide a critical service that people rely on. We are looking to fill one (1) Elections Services Manager to help support our mission. The incumbent will report directly to the Assistant Registrar, work in collaboration with the Clerk-Recorder-Registrar and executive management team, and interact with leaders in other county departments, state officials, and vendors to carry out essential functions. Salary: $99,084.96 – $120,438.48. Deadline: April 25. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

Elections Technician, Jefferson County, Colorado — Take your love of elections administration to the foothills of the Rocky Mountains! Under the direction of an Elections Manger, the Elections Technician is responsible for the administration of multiple duties that support the operations of the Clerk and Recorder’s Elections Division. The position administers processes for elections programs that will include data entry for voter registrations, customer service (via phone, email, and in-person), and day-to-day office administration. During election periods, manages the day-to-day operations of our Mail Ballot processing center; this includes Signature Verification & Challenge Team processing, Military & Overseas voters ballot processing, Ballot Removal, Duplication processing and Health Care Facilities visits. Oversees and manages the work of temporary election workers performing activities in support of the election. Salary: Target Hiring Range: $21.50 – $26.79 USD Hourly. Deadline: April 9. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

Elections Technician-Voter Services, Jefferson County, Colorado— The Elections Technician is responsible for supporting the operations and functions of Jefferson County’s elections. As the front office representative, the Elections Technician acts as the first line of communication between the Elections Division and the public. The Elections Technician performs a variety of general office support and exceptional customer service by telephone, email, and in-person and works to process incoming and outgoing voter correspondence, account for deliveries, manage inventory, order supplies, and provide general clerical support. The Elections Technician also assists office visitors with questions about registering to vote, curing their ballot, and becoming a confidential voter. This position administers processes and procedures for election programs including data entry for voter registrations. During election periods, this role issues absentee ballots, follows election security and chain-of-custody protocols, and welcomes visitors, election watchers, and election workers. This position also oversees and manages the work of temporary election workers performing activities in support of the election. Deadline: April 21. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

Information Technology Security Analyst, Illinois State Board of Elections— The IT Security Analyst reports directly to the Manager of Cyber Operations and Infrastructure. Supports the administration, implementation, review, and improvement of endpoint, network, hardware, application, and data security practices. Implements, supports and monitors the agency’s information security applications, including email security, web security, endpoint security software, firewalls, intrusion prevention applications, data loss prevention, etc. Monitors system dashboards and logs for threat indicators. Analyzes data and performs necessary incident response procedures. Conducts network, system and application vulnerability assessments. Analyzes agency threat surface and makes recommendations to management to harden agency systems. Evaluates agency processes and implements and/or makes recommendations to enhance security. Reviews information received concerning threat events from end users, supervisory personnel, other federal, state, county and local agencies and governmental entities involved in the exchange of data with the State Board of Elections (SBE), external entities such as the Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Center (MS-ISAC), Elections Infrastructure Information Sharing and Analysis Center (EI-ISAC), trusted cybersecurity vendors, law enforcement agencies, and public information sources. Consults with SBE staff on security issues. Provides a high level of customer service to agency staff, state, county, and local election officials. Ensures service desk queues and incidents are handled in an appropriate and timely manner. Salary: $6,264 – $8,917 Monthly. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

Legal Intern, Illinois State Board of Elections— The State Board of Elections’ Legal Division is seeking a legal intern to assist in the creation of the State Officers Electoral Board (SOEB) decision database. The candidate will be responsible for reviewing objections and related decisions to create a public research database of Board decisions. The Internship will require legal research and writing skills consistent with serving as agency counsel. Responsibilities include updating, reviewing and creating reference/training materials focused on election law.  Application: For the complete internship listing and to apply, click here.

Program Officer, Election Trust Initiative— The Election Trust Initiative, LLC is a non-partisan grant-making organization providing support to nonpartisan research, resources, and organizations that help election officials strengthen election administration. Launched in 2023, the Initiative’s founding partners are the Pew Charitable Trusts, the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, and the Klarman Family Foundation. Election Trust Initiative operates as a subsidiary of the Pew Charitable Trusts, a section 501(c)(3) public charity. The program officer is part of a small project team that works to advance evidence-based and nonpartisan solutions that improve the accessibility, integrity, and trustworthiness of the U.S. election administration system. This position will work with the team and our partners to develop strategies to strengthen the field of election administration, identify and vet grantees, provide business planning and capacity building support to key organizations in the field, develop metrics to assess and monitor the portfolio’s progress in attaining its objectives, and coordinate strategies with allied philanthropic partners also investing in the elections sector. This work will involve building relationships with elections officials, researchers, policymakers, non-profit organizations, donors, and other key stakeholders. The position is based in Washington, D.C., though remote candidates will be considered, and it is eligible for up to 60% telework if working from the DC office. The position will report to the executive director of the Election Trust Initiative. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

Senior Campaign Manager, Center for Tech and Civic Life— When you think about elections, you might think about popular candidates, “I voted” stickers, and all sorts of paperwork and deadlines. But behind the scenes are thousands of people in state and local governments who are working hard to make sure accurate election information is published, ballots are counted, and voices are heard. As CTCL Senior Campaign Manager, your goal is to support local elections offices across the country in advocating for adequate and reliable funding at the federal, state and local levels. You will implement CTCL’s nonpartisan advocacy strategy to support elections officials in administering inclusive and secure elections. You will execute tactics to support a range of key audiences including election officials, elected officials, allied organizations, and other CTCL supporters. Working closely with other members of the department, you will manage persuasion campaigns at all levels of government, and support the skills-development of key audiences to build power. You’ll report to the Advocacy Director and work in collaboration with other members of the CTCL team. This is a new position in a new department, so there’s room for you to help shape what the role looks like. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

Senior Specialist-Voter Services, Johnson County, Kansas— The Senior Election Specialist – Voter Services will take a lead role on the voter services team within the Election Office. This position will oversee the office’s use of the statewide voter registration system and support other employees in their work within this vital system. This will require attention to detail and the ability to define a series of tasks to complete work within the system in an efficient and accurate manner for temporary employees. This position will also research and perform all geography changes within the statewide voter registration system to accommodate annexations made by cities as well as district boundary changes made by state and local governing bodies. The Senior Election Specialist – Voter Services will also participate in the programming of elections to include laying out paper ballots and designing the screens and audio for use on the ballot marking devices. This position will also receive and file all candidate paperwork including declarations of candidacy and required campaign finance disclosures. This position also actively mentors, coaches and collaborates with employees to enhance the county mission and vision keeping in mind the common goal of leaving our community better than we found it. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

System Administrator, Sarasota County, Florida— The Systems Administrator is an Information Technology professional responsible for the coordination, implementation, planning, investigating and serving as the liaison for all facets of data processing, to include any election related tasks. Salary: $40,996 – $87,630. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

Systems Integration Specialist, Oregon Secretary of State’s Office— In this position you will serve as the system integration expert and ensure that the new Oregon voter registration system (Oregon Votes) properly interacts with hardware and software systems used by the Agency and counties. This is accomplished in part by, but not limited to: Integration, system support, reporting, and analysis and policy recommendation.  Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

Technology Division Leader, Boulder County, Colorado— The Boulder County Clerk and Recorder’s Office is seeking to hire a Data Analyst. The Data Analyst will play a critical role in helping our office provide excellent service to Boulder County residents by collecting, analyzing, and reporting on data to support effective decision making and operations. This position will work closely with other team members to maximize efficiency and accuracy throughout the elections process. The ideal candidate will be team-oriented and will have the ability to build effective working relationships with others. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.

Warehouse Supervisor, Decatur County, Georgia— The following duties are normal for this position. The omission of specific statements of the duties does not exclude them from the classification if the work is similar, related, or a logical assignment for this classification. Other duties may be required and assigned. Supervises, directs, and evaluates assigned staff; develops and oversees employee work schedules to ensure adequate coverage and control; compiles and reviews timesheets; approves/processes employee concerns and problems and counsels or disciplines as appropriate; assists with or completes employee performance appraisals; directs work; acts as a liaison between employees and management; and trains staff in operations, policies, and procedures. Prioritizes and schedules work activities to meet objectives; ensures that subordinates have the proper resources needed to complete the assigned work; monitors status of work in progress and inspects completed work; consults with assigned staff to assist with complex/problem situations and provide technical expertise; provides progress and activity reports to management; and assists with the revision of procedure manuals as appropriate. Supervises warehouse operations and facilities; safeguards warehouse operations and contents; establishes and monitors security procedures and protocols; implements production, productivity, quality, and customer service standards; plans warehouse layout, product flow, and product handling systems; identifies trends; evaluates and recommends new equipment; and analyzes process workflow, space requirements, and equipment layout; and implements improvements. Researches, purchases, and inventories commodities, equipment, and other supplies; conducts physical counts of inventory items; records issuing and usage; verifies and refines or updates required bid specifications; and maintains related records and documentation. Oversees the administrative process through process assessments, measurements, and process mapping for better efficiency; formulates process documentation; organizes periodic and random cycle counts; formulates and monitors various administrative reports; populates database with stocking levels and other information for proper report generation and order tracking; performs regular maintenance on various inventory report statuses to keep system clean and updated; and reviews various system-generates reports for overall key performance drivers. Manages the issuing, maintenance, servicing, and receiving of various types of equipment and supplies from the supply room. Organizes and directs physical inventory counts; manages vending equipment acquisition, implementation, and orders replenishment items; and manages office product inventory for assigned department and emergency response procedures, non-stocked inventory, and expendable inventory items. Receives and reviews various documentation, including attendance records, overdue equipment reports, operational budgets, equipment status reports, stock transfer reports and about-to-reorder reports, and physical inventory reports; reviews, completes, processes, forwards or retains as appropriate; prepares or completes various forms, reports, correspondence, and other documentation, including inventory measures reports, open purchase order reports, performance evaluations, and performance measurements; compiles data for further processing or for use in preparation of department reports; and maintains computerized and/or hardcopy records. Facilitate all logistics related to the elections operation of voting sites, including moving equipment, furnishings, supplies, and materials; conduct pre-election testing and post-election equipment audits. Serve as site manager for VRE warehouse space; oversee the department’s inventory of voting site supplies, tables, chairs, signs, voting machines, and equipment. Attend and participate in mandatory ongoing training, including certifications and annual training. Salary Range: $42,937 – $66,552. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.


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