Thanks for taking the time to write in regard to Senate Bill 5317, my bill aimed at speeding ballot tabulation and election results. My motivation for sponsoring the bill was straightforward - Washington state has the slowest election system in the country and I've heard from many people who find our timeline for election results to be unacceptably slow. Oregon's vote-by-mail system is largely identical to ours, with the exception of the fact that ballots are due there by Election Day. This speeds results and in Oregon's experience, doesn't deter turnout. In fact, their voting rates have been higher than Washington's in the past two elections. I'm not the only one who feels this way, and others have articulated the need for change well. I'd like to share with you several recent editorials from Washington newspapers advocating for this change in law. You can find links to the editorials below my signature. I hope this information is helpful to you. Thanks again for taking the time to write and have a great day. Best regards, Senator Randi Becker
In addition, she included six links to editorials from six Washington papers claiming our state's need for speed in counting ballots.
And from another source I learned that this language in the bill...
This act is necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health, or safety, or support of the state government and its existing public institutions, and takes effect July 1, 2013.
...is actually the emergency clause language the legislature has allegedly been abusing over the last 20 years. So that's how they do that.