How much power do state legislatures have over federal elections? It’s a question that has never really been tested in courts, but that will likely change in 2024 after Arizona Senate Majority Leader Sonny Borrelli sets the stage for an election standoff.
On Monday, Borrelli sent letters to election officials across the state claiming plenary power over elections. In it, he demanded they comply with Senate Concurrent Resolution 1037, which prohibits the use of foreign voting machines as the primary tabulation tool for elections.
Here’s his press release:
Senate Majority Leader Calls on County Supervisors Statewide to Protect National Security During Future Elections
PHOENIX, ARIZONA- Arizona State Senate Majority Leader Sonny Borrelli is notifying all County Board of Supervisors within the state of Arizona via letter today that they must first and foremost prioritize protecting national security during any future elections.
Back in 2017, the U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security issued a statement clearly designating elections infrastructure as critical infrastructure, which means these electronic systems must have safeguards in place to prevent any attacks which threaten our national security.
This session, the Senate passed legislation that would have fulfilled federal government requirements to protect critical elections infrastructure, however Senate Bill 1074 was vetoed by the Governor. Therefore, with the passage of Senate Concurrent Resolution 1037 (SCR 1037) by the Legislature and its transmission to the Secretary of State. The Legislature is exercising our plenary authority to see that no electronic voting systems in the state of Arizona are used as the primary method for conducting, counting, tabulating, or verifying federal elections, unless those systems meet necessary standards of protection.
“The federal government has made it very clear that elections equipment is considered a target by those who want to threaten the safety and security of our country,” said Majority Leader Borrelli. “We have long ignored this elephant in the room by allowing electronic voting systems made with parts produced in countries considered adversaries to the United States to be used as the primary method for conducting our elections. It is in our state’s and nation’s best interest that we comply with implementation of security measures to protect our republic.”
Many conservatives have been cheering the move on social media. It’s a follow-up to legislation that was passed and subsequently vetoed by Governor Katie Hobbs.
AZ Senate Majority Leader Sonny Borelli issues letter to every county election office notifying them no electronic voting machine can be used in ‘24 election
Katie Hobbs vetoed law, but Constitution gives plenary authority to state legislature so they’re overriding her pic.twitter.com/FPwtEDaU5T
— DC_Draino (@DC_Draino) May 22, 2023
For clarity: This only applies to Federal elections – state election laws still in place
Nobody paid me or told me to post about it – I just thought it was bold action worthy of amplification
Hopefully the momentum created by this can be used to support further election reform
— DC_Draino (@DC_Draino) May 23, 2023
It is the Arizona legislature RECLAIMING PLENARY POWER per the US Constitution over our FEDERAL elections.
No more machines unless they can comply with US-only… pic.twitter.com/p6XM5EMhOt
— Wendy Rogers (@WendyRogersAZ) May 22, 2023
Election officials across the state have declared they will not comply with Borrelli’s demands, setting the stage for legal battles before, during, and after the 2024 elections.