Mississippi is the latest Republican-led state to prohibit election offices from accepting donations from private groups for voting operations.
The movement is said to be driven by conservatives’ suspicion of donations by Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg in 2020.
Mississippi Republican Gov. Tate Reeves signed House Bill 1365 on Friday, and it will become law July 1st. It says state or local officials who conduct elections cannot solicit or accept donations from any private group for “voter education, voter outreach or voter registration programs.”
Reeves said in a video posted to Facebook on Monday that he was “deeply disturbed by big tech’s attempt to influence the 2020 elections.”
“Whether it was their attempt to silence conservative voices or suppress information they don’t agree with, California’s technology elites will stop at nothing to push their woke ideology on the American people,” Reeves said. “Our elections cannot be left up to billionaires like Mark Zuckerberg, especially when groups like Facebook systematically silence conservative voices on their platforms.”
Republicans control the Mississippi House and Senate. The final version of the bill passed the Senate 49-2 with bipartisan support. It passed the House 78-38 with opposition from Democrats.
Jessica Anderson is the executive director of the conservative Heritage Action For America, which has pushed for such bans. She said in a statement Monday that the new law will prohibit the use of “Zuck Bucks.”
“Mississippians deserve to have fair elections free from the outside influence of Big Tech billionaires,” Anderson said. Zuckerberg and his wife, Patricia Chan, donated $400 million for U.S. elections in 2020.
ARTICLE: PAUL MURDOCH
MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: SAN DIEGO UNION TRIBUNE