A controversial California election reform bill that had been sailing through the state legislature with the inexplicable support of Democrats after being authored by a Republican lawmaker, has now been substantially rewritten --- some might say 'gutted'.
And that's a very good thing, according to Election Integrity experts we've spoken with.
Earlier this month, The BRAD BLOG wrote exclusively about AB 2369, a state bill which would have limited post-election voter-requested "recounts" in California to all but the very wealthy, given that it would have changed the state Election Code allowing any voter to request and pay for such a count, to require that the funding for the effort come "from the voter's own personal funds".
[NOTE: The BRAD BLOG generally uses quotes around the word "recount" to denote post-election hand-counts of ballots which have never actually been counted by human beings, but rather, only tabulated by computers. It's impossible to know whether those computers actually tallied votes accurately unless paper ballots are examined by hand.]
The new provision would have been a very big change to current law and, as we reported, would restrict voters from raising funds to help pay for such a count. In the process, it would have drastically reduced the opportunity for citizen oversight of public elections in the state.
Democrats in the state Assembly supported AB 2369, as authored by Republican Assemblyman Curt Hagman for unknown reasons. It passed out of the lower chamber late last month by an astounding 66 to 7 vote, before being sent on to the state Senate.
And then we noticed the bill...