Understanding the Ballot Integrity Act of 2007

Reasons Underlying the Ballot Integrity Act

  • Currently, there are no uniform provisions that allow non-partisan organizations to monitor elections in the polling place. Thus, egregious election fraud has occurred in past elections.
  • In the 2004 and 2006 elections, partisan election observers were seen intimidating voters and working to suppress the vote.
  • Under the guise of limiting fraud, state legislatures have passed new laws saddling voter registration organizations with regulations that are frivolous, onerous, or both, thus contributing to the disenfranchisement of untold numbers of voters.
  • There are no effective safeguards for the removal of voters from voter lists to ensure that no voter is erroneously removed for such immaterial inconsistencies as the wrong spelling of a name.
  • State election officials of both parties violate the integrity of their States’ elections by playing a partisan role in the very elections they were charged with overseeing.
  • More often than not, voters are not offered provisional ballots or are forced to vote by a provisional ballot even though these votes would never be counted for the election.
  • Long lines and waits of up to ten hours to cast a ballot, especially in urban districts with too few voting stations, lead to untold numbers of voters who are disenfranchised because they cannot afford to wait.

What the Ballot Integrity Act Does

Title I

  • Immediately bans the purchase of any new direct recording election voting systems that do not provide an accessible, durable permanent voter-verified paper record.
  • Establishes a grant program to help pay for compliant machines.

Title II

  • Requires that all voting systems used in federal elections beginning in 2010 have a voter-verified paper record.
  • Requires states to audit the electronic tallies. (2010)
  • Requires that every voting place be supplied with emergency paper ballots to offer voters if voting systems break down or other problems cause long delays. (2008)
  • Requires that voting system software is available for inspection and analysis by state election officials and independent technological experts. (2008)
  • Prohibits all vulnerable wireless communication devices in voting systems and prohibits voting systems to be connected to the internet. (2008)

Title III

  • Prohibits chief state election officials from serving being involved in the campaign they are supervising. (2008)
  • Grants all official, legitimate domestic and international election observers access to the election process, as long as they accept election rules and are accredited by the Election Assistance Commission (EAC). (2008)
  • Prohibits burdensome limits on third-party voter registration efforts. (2008)
  • Requires states to ensure that each person who works in a polling place during an election for public office receives adequate training on state election procedures. (2008)
  • Prohibits removing any individual from the voter registration list unless the individual is first provided notice in a uniform and nondiscriminatory manner. (2008)
  • Requires states to permit any person who is otherwise qualified to vote in a federal election to vote absentee without having to provide excuses. (2008)
  • Directs the EAC to set guidelines for states to provide sufficient voting equipment and election resources at polling places to avoid turning away voters because of long lines. (2010)
  • Requires states to develop, according to guidelines established by the EAC, a timely process for counting provisional ballots and to count them without regard to the location at which the voter cast the provisional ballot. (2008)
  • Prohibits states from refusing to accept ballots and registration forms due to non-essential requirements. (2008)

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