State Rep. John Boccieri (D-Poland) today expressed his support for House Bill 609, legislation sponsored by state Reps. Niraj Antani and Mike Duffey that would lift the prohibition on taking a photograph of a marked ballot and sharing it publicly. Taking voting selfies would currently be considered a felony of the fifth degree, which Boccieri noted is far too serious a consequence for such an expression of free speech.
“I sincerely hope that this bill will be passed and enacted because I think people should be allowed to share pictures of their ballots freely. The current penalty for this is incredibly overblown,” Boccieri said. “For example, my opponent this year shared a picture of his ballot on his Facebook page and I honestly don’t think him, or anyone, should be faced with felony charges for posting their vote online.”
There has been much dialogue around the issue of voter selfies during the campaign season this year, given several other states also ban the practice. HB 609 was introduced on Oct. 25 and is currently awaiting a committee assignment.