Our View of the Legislature: Voting

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The disAbility Law Center of Virginia supports the rights of individuals with disabilities to be able to vote in a manner that is accessible and easily available. We promote more accessible polling places and better options for early and mail-in voting to enable as many to be able to vote as want to.

The legislature is considering several bills that would impact the right to vote, including:

Voter Identification Requirements – there are several bills that would require stricter means of proving identity, which can pose an obstacle to people with disabilities who do not have a driver’s license.

Photo ID bills were defeated in the Senate Committee on Privileges and Elections. SB 794 and SB 900 (both from McDougle) and SB 968 (Peake) would have required a photo ID to be able to vote.

HB 1444 (Ware) and HB 1467 (Wyatt) are assigned to the House Committee on Privileges and Elections, subcommittee #1 which will meet Tuesday morning.

Early Voting

HB 1877 (Scott) limits early voting to 14 days before the election. It was approved by a subcommittee of House Privileges and Elections. The Senate equivalent, SB 880 (McDougle) was defeated in Senate Privileges and Elections.

Mail-in Ballots

HB 1948 (Bloxom) removes the requirement for a witness signature on a mail-in ballot, to be replaced with the last four digits of the voter’s social security number. The bill is in House Privileges and Elections.

Curbside Voting

HB 2049 (Bennett-Parker) limits curbside voting to those whose disability prevents them from entering the polling place but expands the definition of disability including any permanent or temporary disability. (Under current law, the disability is limited to a permanent or temporary physical disability.) The bill will be heard in House Privileges and Elections.

The disAbility Law Center of Virginia is available to educate policymakers about the potential impact of legislative proposals. Please let us know of any issues that you think we should be following. Contact us at ga@dlcv.org or info@dlcv.org or by calling 1-800-552-3962 or 804-225-2042.