/ Modified oct 29, 2013 3:29 p.m.

Referendum to Overturn Election Changes Makes Ballot

Successful petition drive stops measures from taking effect until voters decide in 2014 general election.

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A referendum drive to stop Arizona from making election law changes was certified for the 2014 general election ballot Tuesday, the Secretary of State's Office announced.

The petition drive by the Phoenix-based Protect Your Right to Vote Committee gathered 110,770 valid signatures based on a count of random samples of the petitions, Secretary of State Ken Bennett said in a statement. The petitioners needed 86,405 signatures to qualify for the ballot.

Bennett notified Gov. Jan Brewer's office that the measure met the requirements for the ballot.

Brewer signed legislation that allowed voter offices statewide to purge early ballot rolls, to limit who could return early ballots to county registrars of voters and other limits.

The Republican-controlled Legislature passed the bills in the waning days of the legislative session in June, on objection of Democrats and a number of civil rights, voting rights and minority groups.

Republicans argued that the legislation was needed to minimize voter fraud. Democrats countered that the proposals would make it harder for people to vote and that the elderly and minorities would be disproportionately targeted and discouraged from voting.

Arizona recorded less than a dozen instances of voter fraud in the 2010 and 2012 general elections, out of more than 4 million ballots cast in those elections, state officials have said.

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