SB 180 Will Secure Our Elections, Not Jeopardize Them

Alert: A number of falsehoods are circulating about SB 180, an elections clean-up bill being promoted by New Mexico County Clerks and the Secretary of State. The bill will be heard in Senate Judiciary Committee this week.

David and Erin Clements, documented election deniers who have dogged clerks in Otero and other counties, are using ad-hominem attacks on the bill’s sponsors and election officials. They are indicating the bill includes a number of hot-button items that anyone who has gone through the text can see are simply not there.

Here’s what SB 180 REALLY does:

  • Requires SOS to maintain an election security program, including protection of infrastructure, ballot secrecy, and efficient reporting of results (Sect. 7)
  • Requires a process to maintain clean voter rolls and remove voters who have voted in another state, confirmed to be dead, or moved (Sect. 16)
  • Reinstates 2020 mail ballot voting timelines to ensure timely USPS delivery
  • Requires social security numbers for registration (Sect. 17-20) and last four digits and signature for mail ins; clerks must verify SSN and signatures prior to turning over to absentee counting board
  • Establishes stiffer penalty for tampering with drop boxes (Sect. 70-82)
  • Strengthens post-election ballot checks, including hand counts of paper ballots
  • Includes mandatory training for poll watchers and challengers (Sect. 14)
  • Establishes Voter Convenience Centers in all counties (Sect. 15)
  • Changes number of petition signatures and fees for independent and minor party candidates
  • Clarifies that voting system certification process for electronic voting machines is open to the public (Sect. 61)
  • Protects voter information containing information about national critical infrastructure and personal information, including a secret ballot (Sect. 5)
  • Hikes the pay for election workers (capped at $400 for Election Day (Sect. 8-13))

Here’s what it Does NOT do:

  • Legalize ballot harvesting: IN FACT, there are already prohibitions on non-family members delivering ballots. SB 180 further confirms who is a family member.
  • Allow people to vote without Social Security Numbers: IN FACT, Section 17-20 requires full social security numbers for registration and the last four digits for mail-in voting.
  • Force internet-connected poll books which have not been certified: IN FACT, Section 21 authorizes electronic pollbooks only if approved by voting system certification committee and certified by SOS. 
  • Destroy transparency: IN FACT, Section 5 distinguishes between legitimate requests for voter data and those that can be reverse engineered to tell how people voted or destroy critical infrastructure.

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