The Republican-led North Carolina General Assembly has been busy delivering legislation to address the top priorities of North Carolina citizens, and election integrity tops the list. Below is a summary of key wins and advancing bills aimed at protecting the ballot and restoring voter confidence:
- In addition to cutting taxes for all North Carolinians, the biennial budget included a high impact election integrity measure
- Prior to the 2020 election, Democrat NC Attorney General Josh Stein colluded with a partisan State Board of Elections and Democrat attorneys to settle a lawsuit and thereby changing voting rules while avoiding any involvement of the legislature
- The collusive settlement resulted in dramatic extensions to absentee ballot acceptance deadlines and weakened witness signature requirements
- Though legal and judicial actions watered down the Democrats' radical rule changes, the extension of acceptance deadlines remained, leading to drawn out election results and heightened uncertainty
Senate Bill 105 (Budget), begrudgingly signed into law by Governor Roy Cooper, includes a provision prohibiting such collusive settlements by the attorney general, a big win for election integrity, the balance of powers that constitute our governing system, and the citizens of North Carolina:
Election Day Integrity Act (Senate Bill 326)
- Election integrity means eliminating open-ended or protracted acceptance of mail-in ballots; this is exactly what the Election Day Integrity Act does just that
- This legislation aligns absentee ballot acceptance deadlines with the close of polls on election day - ALL ballots must be in by close of polls on election day to be eligible
- Notable exceptions are made for military service members serving overseas and other special situations deserving of defined exemptions
- This is a common-sense bill that restores voter confidence and diminishes uncertainty by having a clearly defined finish line conducive to quick and confident election results
- The Election Day Integrity Act has passed both chambers of the N.C. General Assembly with strong Republican support, and is headed to the desk of Governor Roy Cooper
Prohibit Private Money in Election Administration (Senate Bill 725)
- This bill maybe better be described as banning 'Zuck Bucks'
Approaching 2020 elections, Facebook billionaire Mark Zukerberg injected hundreds of millions of dollars into election administration, selectively targeting areas to drive Democrat vote totals around the country by:
- funding favored election administrators
- deploying insecure "Ballot Drop Boxes" in Democrat strongholds
- greasing the gears of Democrat GOTV operations in Swing States around the country
More than $5 million in 'Zuck Bucks' have been traced to North Carolina
- This legislation would prohibit such practices, banning the injection of private money into election administration
- Senate Bill 725 has passed the N.C. House, and is now headed back to the N.C. Senate
Election Integrity Act (House Bill 259)
- House Bill 259 would clean up voter rolls, purging non-citizens, deceased voters, or otherwise ineligible voters from the system
- Creates a new process to remove non-citizens from North Carolina’s voter rolls
- Requires all voting equipment and software be made in the United States and by an American company
- Requires a post-election audit be submitted to the legislature and delineates what information must be included in that audit report
- This bill passed the N.C. House this week, and now heads to the N.C. Senate for consideration
All of these items have been introduced, refined, advanced by Republican state lawmakers that are listening to the People of North Carolina and their stated concerns. Distrust in our election process is a direct result of Democrats playing dangerous games with one of the most important institutions of our Republic. One of those shady games, a collusive settlements to change laws without a legislature, is now explicitly prohibited in law thanks to the hard work and negotiating of the Republican-majority state legislature.
The fight is far from over, however. As these additional bills advance, either to the governor's desk or the opposite legislative chamber, it is crucial that the executive know just how vital election integrity is to the People of North Carolina.
Republicans are working hard to restore voter confidence and protect the ballot. The citizens of North Carolina deserve nothing less than to have full trust that their vote is counted, that our election system is one of integrity, and that all reasonable measures are taken to make it easier to vote, but harder to cheat.