Rep. Chad Aull files bills to improve voting and add KY to states pledging to support top vote-getter for president

Via Press Release

FRANKFORT – Against the backdrop of today’s filing deadline for candidates running in May’s primary, state Rep. Chad Aull announced he is sponsoring three election-reform bills he called “long overdue.”

            “Two of my proposals would really help voters by bringing Kentucky in line with the vast majority of states, while the third would move our country a step closer to guaranteeing that the presidential candidate receiving the most votes nationally will always be the one who serves,” the Lexington legislator said.

            Under his House Bill 151, voters would have until 7 p.m. local time, instead of 6 p.m., to cast their ballots – the latest time possible without a constitutional change.  “Only Indiana has voting hours as early as ours,” he said.  “If every other state can keep their polls open longer, then so can Kentucky.  This small step would mean a lot for those struggling to fit voting in their busy lives.”

            With House Bill 152, Rep. Aull proposes to stop straight-ticket voting, something only allowed in five other states, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.  “Straight-ticket voting is a relic of another age that needs to end,” he said.  “It values parties over candidates, and I think in these politically polarizing times, we would all be better served if those running for office had to campaign based on their ideas rather than just the letter by their name.”

            Under House Bill 153, Kentucky would be added to the growing number of states that are set to pledge their electoral votes to future presidential candidates receiving the most votes nationally.  The National Popular Vote initiative won’t take effect until states with a combined 270 electoral votes – the minimum to become president – have signed on.  Currently, 17 states with 205 electoral votes are on board, and if Kentucky joined them, that number would rise to 213.

            “Two of our last four presidents were initially elected despite losing the popular vote,” Rep. Aull said.  “This is the one office that governs us all, and I believe we should all have an equal voice in determining who that leader is.  In every other elected office, the one receiving the most votes wins.  It shouldn’t be radical that we follow the same standard for president.”

            All three bills will be considered by the General Assembly during the current legislative session, which is scheduled to end on April 15th.