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Alabama bans curbside voting — ‘Strong election process is what sets our democracy apart from every other country in the world’

Governor Kay Ivey’s office on Wednesday afternoon announced that she has signed two additional bills following the conclusion of the Alabama Legislature’s 2021 regular session last week.

Ivey has newly signed HB 285 and HB 314.

Sponsored by Rep. Wes Allen (R-Troy), HB 285 bans curbside voting. Previously existing Alabama law did not currently provide for curbside voting, however, the practice was also not explicitly barred.

This past year, that unclarity led to multiple rounds of litigation when Secretary of State John Merrill and Attorney General Steve Marshall deemed the practice illegal while activists pushed to have curbside voting instituted at the last minute in certain counties.

HB 285 now codifies the interpretation of Marshall and Merrill.

Allen is running for secretary of state in 2022. Sen. Dan Roberts (R-Mountain Brook) carried HB 285 in the Senate.

Sponsored by Rep. Rod Scott (D-Fairfield), HB 314 revises the process for voter change-of-address updates, which maintains the integrity of voting rolls.

“Our freedom of speech is rooted in our ability to vote, and a strong election process is what sets our democracy apart from every other country in the world. I appreciate the bipartisan efforts of Rep. Allen and Rep. Scott to ensure Alabama’s election process remains free, fair and highly ethical,” Ivey said in a statement.

Both HB 285 and HB 314 take immediate effect.

Sean Ross is the editor of Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn