Pennsylvania state lawmakers revealed their election reform bill to mandate voter IDs to improve election security issues before the next election on Thursday, June 10.
The 149-page Voting Rights Protection Act, introduced by state Rep. Seth Grove (R-York County), would make sweeping changes to the state’s elections if it can get through the Republican-controlled Legislature and then be signed by Gov. Tom Wolf. The Act came after a series of hearings by the House State Government Committee chaired by Gove.
“This responsible bill includes all aspects of issues brought before the committee and will propel Pennsylvania’s election into the 21st century, all while fixing fatal flaws and election security issues,” Grove said in a statement released by the House GOP Caucus.
“Pennsylvania must be a leader in secure elections, which are also accessible to all legal voters,” he said.
The Voting Rights Protection Act includes measures that establish early in-person voting beginning in 2025, vote drop boxes, pre-canvassing mail-in ballots up to five days before an election, curbside voting on Election Day, and uniform regulations for curing faulty ballots across all 67 counties.
A stricter voter I.D. regulation is one of the proposed amendments in House Bill 1300, which would require residents to present their identification before casting a ballot in person during each election. At present, it is only needed at a polling site the first time.
According to the legislation, residents lacking picture identification could sign an affidavit at the polls.
Wolf and other Democratic officials held a press conference on Wednesday, criticizing calls to have Pennsylvania’s election results audited.
“It’s wrong to pass laws that take away someone’s freedom to vote and that’s exactly what these bills are trying to do right now, right here in Pennsylvania,” said Wolf.
He went on to say that any bill that he believed would restrict voting rights would be vetoed.
“I will stand up for our freedom to vote,” he said.