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Arizona moves to criminalize some voter registration activities

Arizona's narrowly Republican state House voted Monday to create some new crimes connected to voter registration. Sponsors say the measure is in response to a raft of fraudulent registrations before the 2018 election. Critics say the bill will suppress voting, especially by young people and minorities.

The measure, which has strong prospects in the solidly GOP state Senate, would create a four-month jail term for people who collect completed voter registration forms but do not submit them within 10 days. It also would make it a misdemeanor, with a potential $2,500 fine, to pay voter registration operatives based on the number of people they sign up to vote.

Another bill passed by the state House would require people who drop off their early ballots at voting centers to provide identification. Opponents say plenty of voters don't carry any of the forms of ID the bill would require.

Arizona, with 11 electoral votes, has voted for Republicans in the past five presidential elections, but last fall Democrats took a Senate seat, a House seat, two other statewide offices and four legislative seats from the GOP.

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