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Voter fraud is a serious crime which infringes on the liberty of others by diminishing the value of their vote and, if done on a large enough scale, could undermine the integrity of our free and fair elections. That being said, jumping from a Class C misdemeanor which is basically the equivalent of a speeding ticket to a state jail felony which requires at least 180 days in confinement is a significant jump.
When we consider overcriminalization some things we look at are the proportionality of the penalty and the degree to which the penalty of a current crime is escalated. This bill would entirely skip the Class B and Class A misdemeanor levels which both carry the possibility but not guarantee a defendant will serve jail time. For example, a Class B misdemeanor allows for up to 180 days confinement in jail whereas a state jail felony mandates no less than 180 days in jail.
For these reasons we oppose HB 1086 unless amended to raise the penalty to a higher level misdemeanor rather than a state jail felony for a first time offense. We would support passage of the bill if so amended.