WASHINGTON, D.C. — Gov. Doug Ducey (R) signed Senate Bill 1485 into law on Tuesday afternoon. The voter suppression bill, passed by the state Senate only an hour before the governor signed it, significantly revises the state’s Permanent Early Voting List (PEVL). A hugely popular provision in Arizona, the PEVL allows eligible voters to sign up to receive a mail ballot permanently. As of Tuesday, 2,047,365 voters are on the list.
S.B. 1485 will change the PEVL to a new name: the “Active Early Voting List,” which would require voters to vote early at least once over two election cycles (four years) in order to stay on it. Otherwise, their names will be purged from the list and they will stop receiving automatic mail ballots. In a letter to Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs (D) upon his signing of the bill, Ducey claimed the law enhanced the “security and integrity” of the state’s elections. But Democrats in the Legislature, who made their opposition known during the bill’s televised vote earlier Tuesday, are concerned the new law would disproportionately disenfranchise voters of color, young people and other historically marginalized groups who rely on receiving automatic mail ballots in order to have their voices heard.