On Tuesday, hearings were held by the Committee on House Administration and the Senate Rules Committee to discuss the current state of our elections. While the hearings covered different angles of the issue, one common theme emerged: Republicans are committed to finding solutions to the most pressing election integrity issues, while Democrats balk at those solutions.
In Luzerne County, on Election Day 2022, nearly one-third of precincts ran out of ballots.
In some cases, there was a shortage just after polls opened.
This resulted in voters being turned away from the polls and denied their right to vote.
When some voters later returned to the polls, they discovered there were still no ballots.
Effectively, many polls in Luzerne County were closed for hours on Election Day and some didn’t reopen.
In response to the ballot shortage, election officials and voters rushed to stores such as Staples to buy standard copy paper for voters to use for voter-created emergency ballots—something truly unbelievable in an American election.
They were then instructed to write out choices on standard 20-pound paper, vote on photocopies of ballots instead of ballot paper, or cast emergency or provisional ballots in place of standard ballots.
They had no guarantee that the voting equipment would be able to process these irregular ballots, or that their vote would count.
Despite these issues, the Luzerne County Board of Elections turned over their investigation into the failures to the local district attorney and ultimately certified the election. Since then, no action has been taken in response to the disenfranchisement experienced by the voters whose votes were not counted.
Citizens from Luzerne County, PA were denied the opportunity to have their voices heard in the 2022 election due to an extreme shortage of ballots.— Congresswoman Laurel Lee (@RepLaurelLee) March 28, 2023
All voters have a right to be heard—I am working to secure our elections to prevent another failure like this from happening again. pic.twitter.com/DmjyiZMkQ1
Everyone on the Committee seemed to agree that what happened in Luzerne County was problematic, but Democrat members of the committee tried to use procedural objections to discredit the hearing.
Democrats on @HouseAdmin making procedurals objections as they do not want to discuss actual voter suppression as it was of GOP voters. Sad, we would hope there would be bipartisan support to fix elections and stop voter suppression. 12/x— RNLA ⚖️ (@TheRepLawyer) March 28, 2023
Meanwhile @HouseAdmin Democrats while admitting the testimony of voters in Luzerne is "compelling" make procedural objections. Wouldn't the Democrats ire be better directed toward the election officials in Luzerne than the disenfranchised voters? 23/x— RNLA ⚖️ (@TheRepLawyer) March 28, 2023
Meanwhile at the Senate Rules hearing, Democrat members of the Committee paid lip service to the idea of bipartisan election reforms that would build confidence in America's elections. But like the House Administration hearing, their actions proved otherwise.
As Senator Cruz explained, most Americans (consistently over 80%!) are in favor of voter ID requirements. Yet, Senate Rules Democrats chose the New Mexico Secretary of State, a staunch opponent to voter ID, to testify at Tuesday's hearing.
.@NMSecOfState is unable to explain to @SenTedCruz why she opposes voter ID. The reality is that there really is no reason to oppose it. Democrats often claim that voter ID requirements would be a financial burden, but every state that has it provides free voter ID. 16/x— RNLA ⚖️ (@TheRepLawyer) March 28, 2023
Republicans continue to show that they are listening to the American people and are prioritizing common sense election integrity policies like voter ID that increase transparency and build confidence in the system. Democrats on the other hand, continue to say one thing and do another when it comes to defending Americans' voting rights.