The group Concerned Women for America released a comprehensive state-by-state analysis examining election integrity, issuing an Election Integrity Rating (EIR) for every state based on a number of key factors, including voter identification, ballot harvesting, absentee and mail-in voting, and absentee ballot verification.
The group, which describes itself as promoting “Biblical values and Constitutional principles through prayer, education, and advocacy,” provided a U.S. map showing each state with its corresponding EIR. An “A” rating, per the group, is any state garnering over 90 percent. The final ranking is based on numerous factors related to voter ID laws and the way the states handle mail-in voting.
Voter identification, for example, is broken down into four categories. A state receives four stars — the highest ranking — if it has “strict” photo ID requirements. “Voters without proper ID will have to vote on a provisional ballot and take further steps for their vote to be counted,” the group explained.
States with “non-strict” photo ID requirements, which sees states giving some the opportunity “to have their votes counted even without the necessary ID,” receive three stars. States that accept non-photo ID receive two stars, and states where there is no “specific” identification requirement receive one star.
Similarly, Concerned Women for America rated each state based on ballot harvesting laws, awarding four stars to states that only allow the voter to return their ballot.
The ranking for ballot harvesting is as follows:
Four stars: States where only the voter can return it.
Three stars: States where specific people pre-identified can return it.
Two stars: States where someone chosen by the voter can return it.
One star: States where it is unspecified.
The group also categorized absentee ballots and absentee ballot verification using the same four-star system:
Four stars: States where ballots sent upon request with a required explanation.
Three stars: States where ballots sent upon request, but no excuse is required.
Two stars: States where ballots are sent automatically.
One star: States with all-mail elections, voters do not need to request a ballot.
“Mail-in ballots being more susceptible to exploitation and interference by third parties; it is important that states have strong laws to verify that the voter’s true intentions are being carried out, instead of being manipulated,” the group said, recognizing voter ID and “multiple layers of confirmation” as the best tools to combat fraud in this area.
The rankings for absentee ballot verification are as follows:
Four stars: Requires copy of voter ID and witness signature on return envelope.
Three stars: Requires a copy of the voter ID only.
Two stars: Requires a witness signature on return envelope only.
One star: Voter confirmed by signature comparison.
Only one state managed to achieve an “A” rating: Alabama. Notably, Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill (R) is serving as the cochair of the Republican State Leadership Committee’s (RSLC) commission to fuel election integrity measures, which aims to introduce tried and true concepts to legislative bodies to “make it easier to vote and harder to cheat.”
“Most states fell below the 50 percent rating, equivalent to an ‘F,’” the group said, concluding that “there is a lot of work to be done to strengthen our state election laws in order to increase voter confidence and participation in our election system.”
Indeed, Alabama garnered the highest rating, a 94 percent EIR. It scored four stars in every category except for voter ID. Concerned Women for America gave it three stars in the category, citing “non-strict photo ID required.”
Arkansas and Tennessee appear to be tied for second place with an 81 percent EIR each. Arkansas saw three stars in every category except for absentee voting, in which it garnered four stars. Tennessee saw four stars in every category except for absentee ballot verification, in which it garnered three stars.
Other states that scored higher EIR ratings include Texas, Indiana, and Kansas, all of which earned a 75 percent EIR. Louisiana, Mississippi, Georgia, North Carolina, Wisconsin, South Dakota, Massachusetts, and Missouri saw a 69 percent EIR. Notably, Florida received a 56 percent rating, scoring three stars on voter ID and absentee, two stars on ballot harvesting, and one star on absentee ballot verification.
Last week, Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) rolled out a massive election integrity agenda addressing many of the issues the state scored lower on, including ballot harvesting and ballot verification.
Several states scored lower than 50 percent, including Arizona, Colorado, Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Minnesota, Nebraska, New York, Oregon, and Pennsylvania, all of which saw a 44 percent EIR. Utah, Vermont, Washington, and Wyoming scored a 38 percent EIR, followed by California, New Jersey, and Washington, DC, all of which saw 31 percent.
The guide comes as Republicans ramp up efforts to address issues related to election integrity following the contentious 2020 presidential election, which raised a number of key concerns particularly in key battleground states such as Pennsylvania and Arizona, both of which ultimately went to President Biden.
“We want to make sure that people are aware of things that are going on,” Merrill told Breitbart News Saturday. “We want to make sure that people know that we are committed to ensuring that we have a successful administration of the election in every state in the union.”