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Dem Govs Get It Done: Gov. Mills Protects Democracy by Signing Election and Campaign Finance Reforms Into Law

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Press Herald Editorial Board: “Maine’s voting laws should be a national model”

Last week, Maine Gov. Janet Mills took a major step towards protecting democracy by signing a full slate of election and campaign finance reforms into law. The reforms include increasing absentee ballot drop boxes, allowing students to register to vote using a student ID, and improving outdated campaign finance regulations.

“These reforms should add to the state’s reputation for running inclusive elections, reflected in our traditionally high voter turnout rate,” writes the Press Herald’s Editorial Board.

Gov. Mills’ strong leadership is a stark contrast to the GOP’s anti-democratic circus act to limit voting across the nation. To fight back against restrictions in states with GOP-controlled legislatures, Democratic governors like Gov. Mills are safeguarding our democracy by expanding the practices that led to record-high participation last year.

Read more about the full slate of reforms below:

  • L.D. 1363 incorporates some of last year’s COVID-19 election reforms into state law, including allowing polling places to expand the use of 24-hour drop boxes for absentee ballots.
  • L.D. 1377 increases campaign finance transparency for independent expenditure advertisements.
  • L.D. 1417 tightens up campaign finance laws by banning direct corporate contributions to candidates.
  • L.D. 1485 updates the technical rules related to PACs and ballot question committees and redefines the meaning of a PAC by lowering the amount of money spent or received by a corporation or organization with the intent of influencing an election to qualify as a PAC from $5,000 to $2,500.
  • L.D. 1575 confirms that student IDs can be used to register to vote.
  • L.D. 1621 clarifies that legislator-run PACs cannot compensate the legislator or their family members for services provided to the PAC or pay businesses owned by the legislator or immediate family members.
  • L.D. 916 protects voters’ data privacy by prohibiting the release of specifically identifiable voter information to the general public by individuals or organizations involved in campaign efforts.