Arizona mail-in voting bill stalls in Senate amid heated debate between GOP lawmakers

(CNN) A bill aimed at changing the mail-in voting process in Arizona, including stopping some voters from automatically receiving ballots, has stalled following an intense back-and-forth between the bill's sponsor and another GOP lawmaker on Thursday.
The legislation in question, SB 1485, would revise the state's permanent early voting list, which allows a voter to automatically receive a ballot by mail for every election.
It would remove voters who have not participated in the last four elections, including partisan primaries, and also don't respond to final mailed notices.
Voters would be allowed to sign up again if they were removed from the list.
A part of an ongoing Republican-led effort to restrict voting across the country, the bill passed the state House earlier this week and had previously been approved by Arizona's Senate.
Because it was amended in the House, it required final approval in the upper chamber before it could be sent to Republican Gov.
Doug Ducey.
The legislation was expected to get final passage in the GOP-led state Senate.
But after coming back to the Senate floor from caucusing on changes to the legislation, GOP Sen. Kelly Townsend said she was voting against the legislation and any other election bills pending a Republican-backed audit of some of the state's mail-in ballots from the 2020 presidential election.
The so-called audit ordered by the Republican-controlled Senate is expected to begin on Friday despite the election results already undergoing multiple reviews that found no evidence of widespread fraud and ultimately being certified by state election officials.
The audit has become highly controversial, with complaints from both the county and the secretary of state's office.
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