A bill to stiffen penalties for election fraud and vote tampering passed the Iowa House today. Republican representative Libby Jacobs of West Des Moines says it covers things from destroying a ballot to intimidating a voter or giving false information. She says the state’s laws and elections are good, but can always use improvements. Jacobs says the presidential election fiasco in Florida gave the issue the visibility it needed to get action.She says the timing was right after the public’s interest was piqued, to “put some teeth” into the laws. Jacobs says the new election-misconduct bill sets up a whole new section of the legal code, with new penalties. There are four levels from simple misdemeanor to Class D felony and someone who tries to vote more than once or tampers with an election could lose their own right to vote. The bill now goes to the state senate.
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