On Wednesday, the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs held a hearing on voting in Native American communities where they discussed potential legislative measures like those currently included in H.R. 4. Democrats are using Native American voting issues as yet another avenue to push their federal takeover of elections, and Oklahoma Senator James Lankford is fighting back.
Check out today’s hearing on voting matters in Native communities: https://t.co/s8lnP9c4Pj— Senate Committee on Indian Affairs (@IndianCommittee) October 27, 2021
Senator Lankford expressed concerns about how the legislation would increase ballot trafficking and change many state's laws regarding absentee voting:
Some of the changes that are also in the bill as well on how it would handle some of the issues like the drop boxes, what that would look like in every part of my state. I have concerns with ballot harvesting, and if it would compel that or allow that—when it’s not in our state law and has not been an issue in our state. It’s something we’ve been very protective of and how we actually handle absentee ballots. We want to make sure everyone has the opportunity to vote early and everyone has the opportunity to vote in person, or we have a “no excuse” absentee as well, but this would change that structure for everyone in our state.
He further expressed the broader issues that would result if H.R. 4 was passed:
The John Lewis bill, that this appears to be moving with, also has an uncertainty for pre-clearance. Currently Oklahoma is not a pre-clearance state. It was not historically a pre-clearance state, they did not have some of the same issues that other states did in the 1940s, 50s, and 60s, so we were not included in that. It’s still uncertain if we would be looped in to becoming a pre-clearance state because of the uncertainty of those definitions in the John Lewis Voting Rights bill… The federal observers—we don’t know how that actually works and operates. To suddenly have federal observers that are coming into our state elections, and then the consent decrees or settlements that have been done in the past that appear to be something that suddenly a state in the future would be punished for… The John Lewis bill reaches back 25 years and looks back to see that anything done in the past that causes consequences for the future…
I have quite a few concerns that we’re walking through on the days ahead on this. And some issues that do need to be resolved because of the uniqueness of where we are as a state, but also to be able to continue to make sure state and local areas are able to stay very, very engaged… As everyone on this group knows Alaska is different than Oklahoma, is different than New York state, is different than California…we want to make sure every person has opportunity to be able to vote.
Thank you Senator Lankford for your commitment to fighting the Left's attempted federal takeover of our elections!