DeSantis Signs Into Law Controversial New Voting Bill

The new law limits the use of ballot drop boxes and restricts vote-by-mail procedures. Republicans say it cracks down on potential fraud; Democrats say it's voter suppression.

By Staff May 6, 2021

Gov. Ron DeSantis this week signed into law the controversial SB90 bill, which limits the use of ballot drop boxes and restricts vote-by-mail procedures. When requesting a vote-by-mail ballot, Floridians are now required to provide a driver's license number, state ID number or the last four digits of their social security number, and those requests have a time limit of two years, or until the next general election. Additionally, drop boxes must now be physically monitored when in use, and ballots may only be returned during early voting hours at all locations other than supervisors of elections offices.

"Our office is currently working to update any processes and procedures affected by the new state election laws," Sarasota County Supervisor of Elections Ron Turner wrote in an email.  "As always, my staff and I are happy to assist voters and answer any questions from the public regarding voter registration or election-related laws.”

DeSantis signed the bill at a live event in Palm Beach on Wednesday at which all media except Fox News was banned; it took effect immediately. Republican lawmakers assert that the new law will tighten up the state’s vote-by-mail laws by cracking down on fraud, despite Florida's successful general election in November. Democrats say it is a voter-suppression tactic. Several organizations, including the League of Women Voters and Black Voters Matter, have filed a federal court lawsuit against the new legislation, calling it unconstitutional.

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