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DeSantis signs bill to ‘protect election integrity’ by limiting mail-in ballots, enforcing ID rules


Ron DeSantis signed a new election integrity bill Thursday restricting ballot drop boxes and those who can vote by mail as Republican state leaders still struggle to contend with the outcome of the 2020 presidential election.

Florida took action this legislative session to increase transparency and strengthen the security of our elections,’ Florida Governor Ron DeSantis said in a statement upon signing the new bill Thursday morning. ‘Floridians can rest assured that our state will remain a leader in ballot integrity.’

‘Elections should be free and fair, and these changes will ensure this continues to be the case in the Sunshine State,’ the Republican and Trump ally said.

Minutes after the bill was signed into law, a voting rights advocacy group filed a lawsuit against Florida, claiming the new provisions are a form of ‘voter suppression.’

States like Georgia and Texas, which have also since the 2020 election imposed stricter election laws to ensure integrity, have also faced litigation for their actions.

Liberals claim requiring a federal picture identification card in order to cast a ballot in national elections is inherently racist, insisting it disproportionately targets minority communities who may find it more difficult to obtain such IDs.

DeSantis told ‘Fox & Friends’ on Thursday of the new law: ‘I have what we think is the strongest election integrity measures in the country. We’re making sure we’re enforcing voter ID. We’re also banning ballot harvesting. We’re not gonna let political operatives go and get satchels of votes to dump them in some drop box.’ 

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis signed a bill Thursday on increasing election integrity

The law, he touted, will help increase trust in the election process and prevent future fraud

The law, he touted, will help increase trust in the election process and prevent future fraud

The bill was spearheaded by GOP leadership in the Florida statehouse and is a direct response to Donald Trump's claims of widespread voter fraud in the 2020 election

The bill was spearheaded by GOP leadership in the Florida statehouse and is a direct response to Donald Trump’s claims of widespread voter fraud in the 2020 election

‘We’re also prohibiting mass mailing of balloting,’ he added. ‘We’ve had absentee voting in Florida for a long time. You request the ballot. You get it. And you mail it in. But to just indiscriminately send them out is not a recipe for success.’ 

The election security bill in Florida was spearheaded by GOP statehouse leaders, including Senate President Wilton Simpson, House Speaker Chris Sprowls, Senator Dennis Baxley, and Representative Blaise Ingoglia, who joined DeSantis for the signing Thursday.

The new law comes after Georgia received a slew of backlash after passing a new election-related law that progressives decried as a form of voter suppression.

This led to sponsors pressuring Major League Baseball to move its All Star game from Georgia as punishment, which the MLB did give in to earlier this year by relocating its game to Colorado.

DeSantis has previously defended the integrity of the election in Florida, but claims more needs to be done in the future to ensure confidence and integrity in the election system and weed out fraud.

Immediately after the new law was signed Democracy Docket, founded by election law and voting rights attorney Marc Elias, filed a lawsuit against Florida.

The lawsuit includes complaints from the League of Women Voters of Florida, Black Voters Matters Fund and Florida Alliance for Retired Americans.

The complaint repeatedly calls the new law the ‘voter suppression bill.’

‘It is crafted to and will operate to make it more difficult for certain types of voters to participate in the state’s elections, including those voters who generally wish to vote with a vote by-mail ballot and voters who have historically had to overcome substantial hurdles to reach the ballot box, such as Florida’s senior voters, youngest voters, and minority voters,’ the lawsuit argues.

The bill, similar to Georgia’s approach to voter issues last month, addresses several issues in one proposal.

In relation to ballot drop boxes, DeSantis says he is ‘not a fan’, but wanted to make sure there were still options for that way to vote.

‘Drop boxes must be geographically located so as to provide all voters in the county with an equal opportunity to cast a ballot,’ the bill says.

The new law requires ballot drop boxes be accessible to all Floridians, but that it only be open during 'regular voting hours' and be monitored by an in-person election worker

The new law requires ballot drop boxes be accessible to all Floridians, but that it only be open during ‘regular voting hours’ and be monitored by an in-person election worker

DeSantis added: ‘The drop boxes will be available only when they’re monitored and during regular voting hours.’

‘You can’t just leave these boxes out where there’s not supervision all hours of the night.’ the governor said.

The bill also prohibits ‘the use of private funds for election-related expenses.’ This is a direct response to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, among others, providing funding to some localities to help run elections last year.

While the gesture was done in presumed good faith to increase turnout, some Republicans felt funding targeted blue areas and favored Democratic voters and candidates.



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