In an 11-page ruling on Tuesday (January 17), a three-judge panel in Arizona rejected an attempt by the GOP to bring early voting to an end, who argued mail-in ballots violated the state’s Constitution.
The judges` rules that mail-in ballots, Arizona’s number one form of voting, didn’t violate the state’s Secrecy Clause.
In the ruling, the judges elaborate on their decision to deny the Republicans’ bid to have mail-in ballots scrapped. The judges explained that how voters fill in the mail-in ballot form kept information like who they were voting for private.
The Court added that it did “not err in finding that these protections are sufficient to preserve secrecy in voting.”
Arizona has been using mail-in ballots since 1991. Voters can request a mail-in ballot and send their ballot in with the U.S. Postal Service or drop it off at a ballot box.
The judges insisted the process maintained privacy by” requiring voters ensure that they fill out their ballot in secret” in addition to the next step, which included sealing their “ballot in an envelope that does not disclose the voters’ choices.”
Republicans haven’t indicated whether or not they intend to take the matter to Arizona’s High Court to appeal the previous Court’s ruling.
Mail-in voting systems enabled President Joe Biden to beat former President Donald Trump in the state in 2020 because more moderate and Democratic voters chose to vote via mail-in ballots. The same voting system gave Democrats an advantage in the 2022 midterm elections, as GOP voters have become skeptical of the practice.