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Rep. Bailey Opposed Bill to Mandate Mail-In Ballots and Increase Costs Nearly $17 Million for Local Election Authorities

Springfield, IL…After several hours of debate, State Rep. Darren Bailey (R-Xenia) voted to oppose Senate Bill 1863 that mandates an expanded vote by mail program and unsecure curbside voting as well as would expand using more 16- and 17-year olds as election judges and other plans for the November 2020 General Election. According to the bill sponsor, this expansion will cost county clerks and election authorities around the state $16,759,400 for the November General Election.

“I do not believe that many counties in Illinois can afford this new mandate. It’s interesting, the Democrats claim the COVID crisis for the need, yet seek to expose many more young people to help with the process,” stated Rep. Bailey. “The concern for voter fraud seems great and could potentially hit a new level.”

There will be undetermined additional costs for mandating election day as another state holiday for state employees, schools and universities, additional costs to the State Board of Elections, and local units of government. Costly and unfunded mandate on local election authorities. Reimbursement by federal government is not guaranteed.

The bill calls for local election authorities to put up ‘drop boxes’ for ballots to be able to harvest more votes. There are no guidelines for security of these boxes or recourse for voters whose ballots may be stolen or tampered with once placed in these new ballot collection boxes place wherever a county clerk or election authority decides. If this bill is signed by the governor and becomes law, the Secretary of State would be required to send two mailings to people to ‘harvest’ their ballots and return them at an unknown cost at this point.

“Anyone who is wanting to social distance because of the coronavirus or any other health concerns may already request an absentee ballot or vote early when there are fewer people voting. Democrat lawmakers claiming they want to make it easier to vote are adding massive costs to taxpayers, increasing the possibility of voter fraud and threatening the integrity of our elections.”

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