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Judge mulls ordering online initiative signature gathering

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Posted at 7:10 PM, Apr 14, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-14 22:10:17-04

GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) — A federal judge is considering whether backers of Arizona initiatives should be allowed to use the same electronic system used by candidates to get signatures to qualify for the ballot.

A lawyer for two groups backing statewide initiatives told U.S. District Judge Dominic Lanza on Tuesday that his clients' constitutional right to get initiatives on the ballot were being "severely burdened'' by the coronavirus pandemic.

Attorney Jim Barton said collecting the 247,000 signatures needed to qualify by the July 2 deadline is virtually impossible.

The move is opposed by Attorney General Mark Brnovich.

Lanza says he expects to rule this week.