Bill to purge Arizona permanent early voting list revived

The Arizona Senate has revived a stalled bill that would purge about 200,000 people from a list of voters who automatically get mail ballots.

The measure died on the Senate floor last week when Republican Sen. Paul Boyer joined all 14 Democrats in opposition, holding it short of a majority. But a Senate committee revived the proposal on Tuesday and Boyer said on Feb. 24 his concerns have been addressed.

The measure has drawn harsh criticism from voting rights advocates, who say describe it as a voter-suppression tactic by Republicans after Democratic President Joe Biden narrowly won Arizona last year.

RELATED: Voting rights advocates decry GOP bills in Arizona State Legislature, saying it amounts to voter suppression

The measure would end the popular permanent early voting list, requiring people to vote at least once in every two election cycles to stay on the list.

Boyer was said he was concerned that people would be dropped from the list for missing just one primary or general election, but legislative lawyers have assured him that a voter would need to miss both the primary and the general for two consecutive cycles.

State election officials say about 200,000 voters currently meet that criteria. They’ll get a letter asking them whether they want to remain on the permanent early voting list and will be removed if they don’t respond.

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