Public Comments for: HB39 - Absentee voting in person; available beginning on the fourteenth day prior to election.
Last Name: Diehl Locality: Loudoun

I strongly support the requirement for a photo ID for voter registration and voting (HB46) This is a common sense, no hassle safeguard to defeat fraud. Similarly, we should ELIMINATE same day registration (HB185). There is simply no way to instantaneously verify that a person is who they claim to be. Furthermore, this imposes a huge, unnecessary burden on election officials or those who may be tasked with a forensic audit, etc. I support the reduction of the early voting period (HB39). Two weeks is adequate for those who must be out of town on business, etc. I support limitations on large amounts of outside funding (HB 205). American elections SHOULD NOT be for sale. As a retired Marine officer and current elections official, I am astounded that sober politicians persist in trying to subvert the Constitution (to which they took an oath) and enable voter fraud through the practices as listed above, as well as ballot harvesting and use of unsecured drop boxes! Through its lack of good judgment and integrity, persons on the Loudoun County School Board have already made us a nationally known laughingstock. Let's pray that similarly minded people in the State Senate DON'T expand our shame by opening our election processes open to rampant fraud.

Last Name: Kasch Organization: a long time Virginian Locality: Arlington

I'm a Virginian in favor of safeguarding the election process. Since I am an Arlington county election officer, I know that preventing election fraud requires voters to be citizens verifiable by free voter ID and a verifiable pre-election day registration process. 14 days is plenty of time to vote. Same day voter registration is wrong because there is no way to verify eligibility and identity. The 45 day election season is an expensive use of taxpayer dollars for election operations. The longer election period provides greater opportunity for fraud and abuse by felons, identity thieves, or illegal inhabitants. It also is burdensome to unpaid poll watchers and other election operations volunteers. Increased demands on the postal service to deliver absentee ballots is asking for chaos and mass disenfranchisement. Election results will take longer to tabulate if there is a massive amount of mail-in voting. Absentee ballots make it much easier to forge a signature, impersonate a voter, or buy a vote in the privacy of one’s home than it is in a voting booth at the polls where oversight occurs. These are common sense election procedures.

Last Name: McDaniel Locality: Fairfax

I am opposed to proposed legislation that requires excuses for absentee voting, shortens the in-person absentee voting time period, and/or eliminates the permanent Absentee Ballot List. I have worked as an Officer of Election since 2016. I serve as a Precinct Chief on Election Day and work during early voting. 1. Voters enthusiastically embraced "no excuse needed" absentee voting in 2021. I constantly heard them express relief at not having to worry about being sick on Election Day, deal with bad weather, or having an unforeseen emergency arise that would keep them from voting on Election Day. Having people vote absentee also eased the pressure on Officers working on Election day. We were still very busy but the crowds were more manageable than in past years. Requiring an excuse to vote early does not increase security in my opinion. 2. Shortening the in-person early voting period to 11 days (beginning 14 days before the election) also puts voters in a difficult position. Voters prefer to place their completed ballots in a scanner. It is difficult for some people to get time off from work to vote and compressing their access will disenfranchise voters. Also, voting early in person was very popular with college students, as they report they have difficulty receiving mail in a timely manner (I processed a significant number of college students in October when they were home for fall break.) 3. Eliminating the Permanent Absentee Ballot List and requiring annual requests puts an undue burden on those voters who qualify for this process. In particular, elderly and disabled voters should not have to prove their conditions annually.

Last Name: Nicholls Locality: Chesapeake

Please move to report HB34, 35, 36, 39, 178, 528, 1090, 1141 to protect minority votes which can be diluted by fraudulent votes and places blame unfairly on minorities for questionable voting practices. Against HB177, 196 because those can affect handicapped/disabled. If they are left for them, then no problems.

Last Name: Kallay Locality: Spotsylvania

My name is Paula Kallay and I have been an election officer in Spotsylvania County for 11 years. I would encourage this sub-committee to vote in favor of shortening early voting from 45 days to 14 days. 14 days with offices open from 9-5 and offering 2 Saturdays before election day should give voters sufficient time to cast their vote. What has been required to increase the voting period from 14 to 45 days? - Challenges finding qualified personnel to staff more than triple the “man hours” at voting places - Effectively more than tripling the expense of the increased personnel requirements - Increased costs associated with maintaining offices for an additional 31 days What have we gotten for the expense and effort? - Precise data has not been completely collected yet, but in Spotsylvania this year, early voting started on January 1st. 27 days into early voting we have had just over 100 people vote. Most likely, most of them could have voted later or by absentee ballot. Is the state really getting its money’s worth?

Last Name: Belchak Locality: Hampton

I support HB's: 34, 35, 36, 39, 177, 178, 196, 198, 528, 1141, because we need to have a system where all Virginia voters can have confidence in the integrity of our elections. Without these reforms, loop holes are left open that can allow third party organizations, or campaigns, to manipulate ballets, steal ballets from voters, or manufacture fraudulent voters. We need election reform now! Thank you.

Last Name: Savage Locality: Fairfax

I'm writing in strong opposition to HB34, HB35, HB36, HB39. HB177, HB178, HB196, and HB198. These bills would clearly and undeniably suppress access to the ballot box in Virginia. We know the Senate is going to vote them down, you might as well spare the trouble and kill these bills in subcommittee. The General Assembly ought to be focused on more important issues than suppressing the right to vote.

Last Name: Watson Organization: Hamkae Center Locality: Fairfax

Hello, I am Sami Watson, Field Coordinator with Hamkae Center. We work with Asian American voters across the state and we oppose House Bill 39. Data shows that Asian Americans increased their voter turnout by more than any other racial demographic between 2016 and 2020, and that Asian Americans are increasingly voting early and absentee. Therefore, any restrictions on early and absentee voting would limit Asian American voter turnout. Thank you for your time.

Last Name: Boyer Locality: Fairfax County

Election Integrity guarantees our voice is heard and the we can trust the system. It is foundational to the backbone of this country. It has been my astonishing revelation that this most SACRED of all abilities - believed to be held UP- in such esteem and REVERENCE yet in reality is trampled upon, disrespected and disgraced , given away with no value whatsoever in order to game the system. It is totally and completely unprotected. IT is UNTRUE. This reminds me of the snake oil salesmen who came into towns in the early days selling fakery and un-truths. As the American people come learn the truth - it IS happening now folks, make no mistake, they will ask the leadership to answer for this'd hold you accountable for this bait and switch. WE need real election integrity for LEGAL CITIZENS ONLY. WE NEED PRISTINELY CLEAN VOTER ROLLS. Here is the list of what we must do to repair and restore the trust of the American People. Establish laws enabling forensic audits and voter canvass Repeal same day voter registration Repeal no voter identification Repeal the permanent absentee ballot list Repeal no-excuse AB Repeal 3rd party mailing of AB Repeal ballot harvesting Eliminate AB drop boxes. We also want 1 day of voting, but anything less than 45 days would be better than nothing. Do not accept AB after Election DAY. Repeal pre-registration of 16 year olds Repeal automatic voter registration by DMV Please vote appropriately on ALL bills in support of these goals. Angela Boyer Great Falls Va 22066

Last Name: Mashburn Organization: League of Women Voters Locality: Abingdon, VA

It is very important that Virginia has an uncomplicated and accessible method of voting for every citizen to register their preference. Fraud is not a big problem, so obstacles should not be placed in the way of voters.

Last Name: Kimberlin Locality: Fredericksburg

Voting should be simple, quick, and accesible to everyone. We have a lot of elderly and/or disabled residents, people who don't have access to a car, or members of the military serving overseas. Our legislators in Richmond should be working to make every Virginia's voice is heard. In addition, returning citizens should be eligible to vote once their sentence is completed. If they've served their time in prison as determined by a judge and/or jury, no purpose is served by denying them the right to vote.

Last Name: Marie Locality: ARLINGTON

Virginia enacted several new voting laws in 2020 and 2021 to make voting more accessible during the pandemic. Early in-person voting hours were increased, mail-in absentee ballots no longer required a witness signature, more drop-box locations were available. These changes led to record voter turnout (with insignificant fraud) in both the 2020 presidential election and the 2021 gubernatorial election. Therefore I oppose any new bill that would restrict our rights to accessible voting.

Last Name: Martin Locality: Fairfax

Voting is a constitutional right. Any law that restricts rather than expands our constitutional right & DUTY to vote is simply voter suppression. We must not repeal any expansions of absentee ballots. Do not decrease early voting. - extend the number of days allowed. Do not eliminate any ballot box locations- expand. We have no need to re-register absentee ballots every year. No excuse absentee voting is absolutely crucial. The state must provide easy and free access to voter ID if a photo is required. Since the USPS has slowed considerably, we must keep the 3 day rule for receiving ballots after election day. All local elections must be on Election Day (in Nov). Election Day should be a holiday. Until we do a complete overhaul of campaign finance & eliminate dark money/special interests there must be no restrictions on outreach, education & registration or from where a candidate may collect funds. Voter registration up to and including Election Day is absolutely crucial to ensure all citizens vote. I support all bills expanding our rights and abilities to make voting as easy as possible. I oppose all bills attempting to restrict any access to our ballot and our vote. The process is too important for the elected officials to be able to restrict us from our duty to be informed voters. Keep expanding our rights. Do not restrict, suppress or subvert them.

End of Comments