Naples, FL—This week, the Virginia General Assembly passed commonsense, bipartisan reform to protect future state elections from the influence of out-of-state billionaires by banning private funding of non-partisan election offices.
In 2020, Virginia election offices received more than $3.9 million in COVID-19 relief grants from private donors. Research from the Foundation for Government Accountability (FGA) found that less than one percent of the funding was actually spent on COVID-19 related expenses. Instead, a majority was used for staff expenses, vote-by-mail efforts, and absentee voting-related equipment. Senator William Stanley’s effort to introduce S.B. 80, which bans private funding to election offices, has shown Virginians that their legislature stands by secure and transparent elections free from outside influence.
“The Virginia General Assembly took great strides today in securing future elections. State officials reached across the aisle to work with one another and choose election integrity reforms that best serve all Virginians,” said Trevor Carlsen, a Visiting Fellow at the Opportunity Solutions Project (OSP). “More states should look to the example that Sen. Stanley and other Virginia lawmakers set to show their citizens that they are committed to fair and honest elections.”