PHOENIX – Secretary of State Katie Hobbs made the following statement after six ballot initiative campaigns filed lawsuits seeking authorization to use the E-Qual system to collect electronic signatures to qualify to appear on the ballot for the November election.
“I won’t oppose the request being made by these organizations. I plan to let the court know that my office can implement the necessary changes, should that be the court’s order. Given the challenges to in-person signature collection caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, allowing initiative campaigns to use the E-Qual system, as some candidates already do, is a reasonable option for protecting public health and supporting continuity in our democratic processes.
“Arizonans are responding to this public health emergency. There has been direct action taken in health care, housing, restaurants, veterinary services, and more to respond to the circumstances on the ground. Such adjustments protect everyday Arizonans, and those on the frontlines working to keep us safe. This moment has shown just how interconnected we all are.
“We can and should make reasonable accommodations in light of the global pandemic, and I’m concerned that the attorney general’s request delays action. I hope that the court will recognize the need for workable solutions.”