New voting bills introduced in Nebraska Legislature
LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) – On Wednesday afternoon, Nebraskans testified on three newly proposed legislative bills dealing with elections.
Supporters say LB 457, 808 and 193 would all, in their own way, protect the integrity future elections in Nebraska.
LB 193, introduced by Sen. Steve Halloran, would require that voting systems in the state be made in the United States.
“This bill works to secure our state’s election infrastructure and prevents foreign supply chain exploitation by requiring all parts of the voting system to be made in the USA using trusted processes accredited by the DOD’s defensive microelectronics activities DMEA guidelines,” he said.
Supporters like Roy Zach believe this change will reduce the possibility of cyberattacks.
“At the current time, it is conceivable that rouge actors, whether foreign or domestic, could develop AI systems to corrupt any and all elections that utilize modern digital technologies,” he said.
LB 808, also introduced by Halloran, would make clarify when election officials and candidates can ask for a hand count of ballots.
LB 457, introduced by Sen. Rick Holdcroft, would require surveillance of voting and provide anti-tampering and anti-counterfeiting systems for paper ballots, vote scanning devices and vote tabulating.
What about the cost to implement the bills? According to the fiscal report of each bill, the combined added cost to make every change presented would be over $16 million.
That’s money that opponent Arlo Hettle thinks could be better used elsewhere to help with election integrity.
“We could audit our polling places for ADA compliance and make changes to increase access for voters with disabilities,” he said on behalf of the Nebraska Civic Engagement Table. “We could fund a robust public education campaign on voter ID and pay for mobile units to get IDs to more voters. We could set up a text and email notifications with voters for early ballot. The Nebraska Table urges the Legislature to not move these to file.”
Election integrity will continue to be a hot topic in the U.S., especially with another upcoming presidential election.