(KFYI News) – The Arizona House Judiciary Committee voted 4-2 along party lines on Thursday to approve a bill that would repeal a series of election changes made by a bill signed into law last year.
The election law changes, known as House Bill 2305, were put on hold before they could take effect after a voter initiative was filed to overturn the law. The voter initiative qualified for this fall's ballot.
Among other things, HB 2305 would make it more difficult for third-party candidates and voter initiatives to qualify for the ballot, and make it illegal for community groups to pick up sealed, signed early ballots from voters' homes and deliver them to election officials.
Judiciary Committee chair Eddie Farnsworth, who sponsored the legislative repeal effort, says repealing HB 2305 at the legislative level would be more efficient than going through the election process.
Some Republicans have said the repeal bill, if successful, would allow lawmakers who pushed HB 2305 last year to introduce separate bills for each of HB 2305's provisions, which would make it much more difficult for voters to overturn the changes.
Farnsworth insists that he's not aware of any effort to pass HB 2305's provisions piecemeal, and that his bill is solely a response to the voters' unhappiness with it. However, he added that he feels some aspects of HB 2305 are worthy of becoming law, and some of those "should be examined".
The bill must pass through one more committee before moving to the House floor.