State Senate Votes To Remove Witness Requirement

Now Heads to House of Delegates

January 25, 2021 - 4:09 pm

(Matt Demlein, WRVA)


Richmond, Va. ( - The State Senate, along party lines, has voted to remove the requirement that a witness watch the opening of a mail-in absentee ballot, and sign the ballot.  The requirement was waived last year because of the Covid pandemic.

State Senator Barbara Favola (D-Fairfax) says Virginia should remove as many barriers to voting as it can, and mail-in ballots have not been shown to be a source of fraud.  But Sen. Mark Obenshain (R-Rockingham) says removing the signature will cut down on confidence.  Obenshain says he is not alleging there was fraud in this year's election.

The measure now heads to the House of Delegates, which also has a Democratic majority.