I’ve been an Arizona Conservative for over 40 years. Opposing mail in ballots is just stupid.

At some point republicans in Arizona are going to need to have a come-to-Jesus-moment on mail in voting. The majority of voters in Arizona are republican (34.5%), older (55%) and use mail in voting (80%) like me. These are undisputed facts and we’ve been living with them since 1992. So, when candidates, especially ones running for high profile state races endorse scraping vote by mail it makes me think they don’t know anything about Arizona’s vote by mail system or Arizona’s history. I mean we did go decades without a Democrat in statewide office right?

Kari Lake recently said that ending mail-in-voting would curb opportunities for “mischief by the unscrupulous.”

It is true Democrat Adrian Fontes, who lost reelection as Maricopa County Recorder in the 2020 election to Republican Stephen Richer, did attempt to send out mail in ballots to every registered voter during the pandemic but he was stopped by the Republican Governor, Democrat Secretary of State and Republican AG. In addition, the reason we know that there have been attempts at voter fraud through the vote-by-mail system is because they keep getting caught. So her argument fails when faced with facts and those facts demonstrate that the system in this state works.

Long standing Arizona voters and residents are aware that our mail-in-voting system is the gold standard in the nation and the multiple audits over the years (including the cyber ninja one) have found that the Arizona system is accurate and secure. Under Arizona law, election officials must compare signatures on early ballots to the signatures on voter registration forms, DMV documents and petitions. In addition, machines that tabulate early ballots are subjected to a logic and accuracy test by the Secretary of State’s Office to ensure they’re working properly, and tabulation centers are required to have webcams operating 24 hours a day to allow the public to see areas where ballots are counted.

Most Arizona’s are also aware that their populations have been exploding. Traffic congestion is getting worse and long lines at polling locations are already hours long. Experts estimate that prohibiting mail in voting would increase the volume at polling locations 10-12 times. If wait times at polling places are 3-4 hours long now how bad would they be after ending mail in voting? At a minimum it would cost tax payers millions of dollars to create and staff more polling locations. It is just not prudent or practical.

So, republicans are faced with a game changing decision abandon mail in voting or lose future elections.

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