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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Marj Fogelman (R)

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Wednesday, April 10, 2024

ST. PAUL – Election integrity has been a concern for some residents over the past few years. State Representative Marj Fogelman (R-Fulda) said a comprehensive election policy bill that was approved solely by House Democrats on April 8 will do little to alleviate their fears.


“The argument can be made that this bill actually makes it easier for people to vote illegally, and that billionaires can spend money in Minnesota to influence our elections,” Fogelman said.


For example, Fogelman points to a new provision that allows voters to describe where they’re living while filling out a voter registration form rather than listing an actual address.


“In other words, a person can basically say they’re living in a shed just off Third Street and be good to vote,” Fogelman said. “Think about the voter fraud that could happen with just this ridiculous provision alone.”


Fogelman said the House majority also shot down efforts to prevent private grant money from being used to help conduct elections. In 2020, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg made a $300 million donation to a liberal group that had the stated goal of providing voter access, money which many believe was ultimately used for partisan voter turnout. Since then, 28 states have banned this dark money influence, but Minnesota House Democrats weren’t interested, opposing a measure that would have done just that. 


Fogelman noted that provisions that would have prevented nonprofits that receive government funds from spending that money on political campaigns were also blocked, as were initiatives that would have brought more security to our election system.


“There were no safeguards accepted by the House majority,” Fogelman said.  “We had amendments to implement chain of custody, prevent the mass mailing of ballots, make Election Day a holiday, or allow for provisional ballots, and all were opposed. There’s nothing here to address any concerns citizens have been voicing across the state regarding keeping our elections safe and secure. This bill hurts Minnesotans.”