An election integrity bill, HB 2270, was introduced by Arizona State Rep. Shawnna Bolick, that would make it illegal for a person who is responsible for overseeing election operations to also serve in a leadership role for a political action committee (PAC). In introducing the bill, Bolick maintained that serving in that role would create a conflict of interest.
In fact, activists on both sides of the political aisle were shocked and outraged when an election official, Maricopa County Recorder Stephen Richer, announced the formation of the “Pro-Democracy Republicans of Arizona” PAC in November. Richer, a moderate Republican, hopes to support other candidates that share his absolute conviction that the 2020 election was impeccably run, and who oppose many or all of the election integrity reforms being proposed in the Legislature. It is believed Bolick had Richer’s questionable PAC in mind when she conceived of the bill.
“Leading up to the 2020 elections, money from Big Tech and Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg played an outsized influence in Arizona’s elections. Thankfully, last year the Arizona Legislature passed a law prohibiting election offices from receiving private monies for preparing, administering, or conducting an election,” said Bolick in a press release.
“Zuckerberg’s Center for Tech and Civic Life granted Maricopa County election officials close to $3 million, but this Big Tech giant’s tentacles extended further into several other county election offices across Arizona, too,” continued Bolick. ““Arizonans want us to restore election integrity and their faith in their election officers to conduct fair and honest elections. This bill would ensure Arizona is not for sale by special interests or out-of-state billionaires. It is time to close the final loophole by prohibiting an election officer or employee who oversees any significant aspect of election operations from running a political action committee that could potentially sway an election outcome.”
According to Bolick, HB 2270 is expected to ensure that an individual who is an election officer or employee who oversees any significant aspect of election operations may not be a chairperson, treasurer, or other member of a political action committee. It would not apply to an individual’s membership in a candidate committee for their own candidacy.
Bolick is currently running for the Republican nomination for Secretary of State.