I am incensed at Gov. Gianforte signing and our Republican legislators passing the election laws restricting voter access in Montana. All the restrictive election bills being passed in Montana and other states are predicated on the “big lie,” pure and simple. Former president Trump and his minions and supporters are corrupt in their insistence that the 2020 federal election was fraudulent. The “big lie” and the voter suppression laws resulting from the “big lie” should make every citizen, regardless of party affiliation, mad. More to the point, we citizens are being treated like criminals, having to prove worthiness for basic rights to participate in democracy.
If these tactics of suppression are implemented I believe that the governor and his Republican supporters, as well as any person who espouses the “big lie,” should be held to voter restrictions
beyond those passed in this session. I believe these persons should be required to show, before voting, either by mail or in person, three picture identification documents and three pieces of mail showing matching addresses. If those pieces of mail do not match the identifications, an additional official USPS certification of change of address must be submitted. Further, in order to be considered eligible to vote, all of these must be provided to the local elections office by certified mail, stamped with official postmark showing the date of mailing or if delivered to the office, the official date stamp of the office. Only by this proof of eligibility can these individuals vote.
Not one of us should be fooled into believing that newly passed restrictions are anything but voter suppression. Government officials at every level, and every voter in this state, must condemn voter suppression efforts now and for free and fair elections in the future.
Darla L Hoff
Bozeman Daily Chronicle Letter to the Editor 5/2/21