Dush’s Dropbox Elimination Bill Would Disenfranchise Penn. Voters

Today, the Pennsylvania Senate State Government Committee will vote on legislation that would eliminate absentee ballot dropboxes and satellite election offices statewide (SB99). The committee will also consider legislation to implement “anti-fraud measures” (SB250), which would unnecessarily burden local election offices. 

Ahead of today’s hearing, Philip Hensley-Robin, executive director of Common Cause Pennsylvania, issued the following statement: 

“Using a dropbox is a safe and secure way for Pennsylvanians to vote. When voters have options on how they return their ballots, it’s easier for more voices to be heard in our elections. 

“Ballot drop-boxes also have security measures that are not available at most post office boxes, including video surveillance. Senate Bill 99 would remove these secure ballot-return locations, making our elections less secure, and would force mail voters to rely on the post office to return their ballots, disenfranchising voters whose ballots would inevitably be delivered after the deadline. 

“Ballot stuffing, ballot harvesting, and voter fraud are vanishingly rare. It is not helpful to eliminate secure voting options that work well for hundreds of thousands of Pennsylvanians over sensationalized, unfounded claims of fraud. This proposal is a solution in search of a problem, and we urge the Committee to reject this extreme call to restrict the right to vote.

“The committee will also vote on SB 250, which would put in place onerous and expensive requirements related to the paper stock election officials must use for ballots. These requirements would dramatically increase the costs incurred by election offices. Most importantly, these requirements would not make our elections more secure.”