Rep. Mary Kiffmeyer (R-Big Lake) authored the Vote Restriction amendment and Dan McGrath of Minnesota Majority campaigned to pass it. Minnesotans didn’t buy into their fear-mongering about brown-skinned people voting and felons voting and non-existent vote fraud and their amendment failed.
But Kiffmeyer and McGrath will never rest in their quest to make sure that fewer Minnesotans (and especially liberal and/or brown-skinned ones) are able to vote. So they are outraged about an early voting bill that would make voting easier and more convenient.
When conservatives like Kiffmeyer and McGrath don’t like a proposal they simply label it unconstitutional. Regardless of what is in whatever constitution they are referring to.
More and more Minnesotans are using absentee voting. It’s become our defacto early voting method. The proposal before the House would institute early voting.
The author of the Minnesota bill, Sen. Katie Sieben (DFL-Newport), says political parties encourage Minnesotans to “vote early” by using an absentee ballot. To vote absentee, a voter must swear that he or she is doing so for one of five specific reasons allowed by law. The reason most voters give is they will be absent from their precinct. Sieben says the growing popularity of absentee voting shows that Minnesotans would like to have the convenience of voting before election day.
McGrath said Sieben’s early voting proposal was “extraordinarily dangerous for the integrity of our election system.” He added that “we can simply not have every election convenience to make voting easier and at the same time have none of the features that other states employ to make cheating harder, unless our objective of course is to be governed by the candidates and parties who cheat the best.”
McGrath’s group has often alleged that there is cheating in Minnesota elections. Last year he claimed the voter photo ID constitutional amendment was defeated because of voter fraud. However when the state canvassing board met to certify the election, Minnesota Election Director Gary Poser said there was no evidence of voter fraud in Minnesota’s 2012 general election.