By: Kristin Palmason
A controversial piece of election legislation (HB 2023) enacted in Arizona in 2016 made ballot collecting a class 6 felony. Ballot collection, known as “ballot harvesting” is the practice of collecting completed ballots from voters and hand delivering them to be counted. Proponents of the practice say it is a valuable service that benefits voters in need of assistance to ensure that their vote is counted, while critics decry the practice as ripe for fraud. This issue is particularly salient in Arizona, where approximately 80% of voters receive their ballot in the mail (which can then be returned via mail or delivered to the county by hand).