Senate bill SB 162 and related voter ID bills perpetuate the Big Election integrity lie at Montana taxpayer expense. It is an affront to every Montana Republican and Democrat clerk and recorder in the state. This effort by present State Republican leaders is an additional bureaucracy regulation solution in search of a problem paid for by Montana taxpayers. Promising an unverified solution to a non existing problem as defined by the numbers set forth in Senator Ellsworth’s letter as seen in the Ravalli Republic 2/14/21.
While not specified, the 1100 election convictions mentioned are most likely for the whole nation. Based on 159 million 2020 votes cast nationally 1100 equals 0.000692% of total votes cast. If the same 1100 cases all occurred in Montana, of the 382,072 votes cast, 1100 equals .29% of all 2020 votes cast. This is an absurd waste of legislative time and taxpayer money after a Republican run of the Montana election slate by mostly double digit wins.
Further, these bills betray the long held Republican tenants of policies advocating for less government regulation, cost analysis of legislation prior to introduction, verified cost reduction and increased efficiency of new regulations. What are the total taxpayer costs to state government and individual Montanans of these voter ID proposals? What is the potential reduction in voter fraud by voter ID’s below the 0.000692% national average or when applied to Montana of 0.29%? What will be annual cost for program administration and the resulting cost per conviction?
We want a local representative to work on state and local issues not to apply national Big Lie regulations to nonexistent Montana problems, at taxpayer’s expense with no verification of results and unwarranted vilification of Montana’s election system. Also of the 1100 election cases mentioned why is only a Trump voting Mexican immigrant highlighted? Are we to assume the remaining convictions are just your run of the mill bigoted Irish Americans or what?