Lawmakers release report pushing for changes to Pennsylvania’s election system

This Week in Pennsylvania

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — Pennsylvania lawmakers want to make major changes to our election system.

In a series of hearings over the past few months, lawmakers led by Rep. Seth Grove (R – York) heard hours of testimony from experts about our election system.

“We delve into the entire election process from voter registration all the way to post-election audits and certification and looked at every single step of the process,” Grove said.

On Monday they released a report detailing some of the changes Republicans want to see. It included suggestions about issues like voter ID laws, signature matching on ballots, more training for election officials, and improved post-election audits.

“It is literally a holistic approach because I think our voters demand it. I think our election directors demand it. It is just something we have to do the big lift. Roll up our sleeves and get to work,” Grove said.

Democrats aren’t on board with many of the changes. Rep. Margo Davidson (D – Delaware) was the Democratic chair of the committee.

She disagrees with many of the things the report suggests.

“It’s completely disingenuous. What they’re really doing, and the legislation shows what they’re really doing, is making it easy to suppress,” Davidson said.

She wants to see changes to the election system too, just not the ones in the report. Instead, she and fellow Democrats are pushing for things like in-person early voting, same-day voter registration, and pre-canvassing, which she says has bipartisan support.

“Everything else that they propose is highly partisan and it really doesn’t reflect the hours and hours of testimony,” Davidson said.

Non-partisan group Common Cause PA believes there’s room for improvements. But Executive Director Khalif Ali says with the record voter turnout the state saw in the last election, they think we should be looking for ways to enhance what we’ve already built.

“Amazing numbers, I’m very happy with that,” Ali said. “We can still have conversations about what we should be doing to make it better, But we can’t tear down a system that yields that type of outcome. We can’t tear it down.”

Rep. Grove says the goal is to pass legislation by the end of June so that election officials have time to put all of the changes in place before the next general election.

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