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Organizations statewide slam Florida's election law

Posted at 9:25 PM, May 06, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-06 21:25:39-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — A new law in Florida changes how people vote. Gov. Ron DeSantis signed Senate Bill 90 into law Thursday. Those changes hit on ballot boxes, registration, and mail-in ballots.

While Gov. DeSantis celebrates those new laws, groups like the League of Women Voters aren't as pleased. Patricia Brigham is the President of the Florida League of Women Voters.

"We believe this law is wrong. It should've never been filed, let alone signed. It's a voter suppression bill. It restricts access to voting," said Brigham.

The law bans what Gov. DeSantis calls "ballot harvesting". That's when volunteers or election workers collect ballots from voter's homes and drop them off at polling locations or elections offices.

The law says a person can only return two ballots other than immediate family members. The opposition says that makes it harder for volunteers and election workers to collect ballots from homes.

As for ballot drop boxes, there more restrictions to where you'll find one and when you'll be able to use it. A box can't be moved within 30 days of an election.

"Florida being a tourism state, those ballot boxes were convenient to service workers working all kinds of odds hours," said Brigham.

Voters have to request a mail-in ballot annually. For voter registration drives, every volunteer must tell someone that online registration is an option.

"Who knows if the voter walks away and doesn't register at that time if he or she will ever register?" said Brigham.

Faith in Public Life says it's now looking at ways to combat the law as well. Joey McKinnon is the Director of the organization.

"What we're hearing in the pews is that there's a great deal of concern about barriers after going through a successful election," said McKinnon.

Faith Leaders saying fighting for the people is one of the many jobs of the calling.

"Faith communities have been part of the founding of the country to the civil rights movement," he said.