Available Soon: Request your printed copies of the Idaho Freedom Index mailed to you!
Request Your Copies
Note to Dustin: This is currently only visible to logged in users for testing.
Click Me!
video could not be found

House Bill 232 — Polling place prohibitions

House Bill 232 — Polling place prohibitions

Parrish Miller
March 1, 2023

Bill Description: House Bill 232 would significantly increase existing limits on freedom of speech at and near polling places. 

Rating: -3

Does it violate the spirit or the letter of either the U.S. Constitution or the Idaho Constitution? Examples include restrictions on speech, public assembly, the press, privacy, private property, or firearms. Conversely, does it restore or uphold the protections guaranteed in the U.S. Constitution or the Idaho Constitution?

House Bill 232 would repeal and replace Section 18-2318, Idaho Code, which defines and prohibits electioneering at polling places. 

Current law limits these prohibitions to within a polling place or within 100 feet of it. House Bill 232 would expand this prohibition to anywhere within 300 feet of a polling place and "any parking lot adjacent to such building that is routinely used for parking at that building."

It would also prohibit electioneering along "the routes of access between the building and any parking lot" and "any route of access between any public right-of-way and the building in which votes are being cast or absentee ballots are being deposited." 

Of particular concern is that there are no exceptions to these prohibitions for private property that may be along access routes or within 300 feet of a polling place. 

People who live across the street from a school could be barred from displaying political signs in their front yards under this law. 


Another problem is the inclusion of parking lots. The bill defines "electioneering messages" as including (among other things) "campaign posters, signs, unofficial voter guides, banners, flags, and personal apparel."

This would effectively prohibit political signs and possibly even bumper stickers on the personal vehicles that citizens drive to or near polling places to vote.


According to an opinion issued by the Idaho attorney general’s office in October 2020, the current law against electioneering does not prohibit a voter from wearing a campaign t-shirt or button as long as the voter does not otherwise engage in politicking or electioneering. 

House Bill 232 would explicitly call out "personal apparel" as a form of electioneering, saying, "a voter must remove or cover any electioneering messages before entering the area where electioneering messaging is prohibited."

This prohibition infringes on freedom of speech and also, as noted above, could infringe on personal property rights involving one's vehicle or even home. 


Idaho Freedom Foundation
802 W. Bannock Street, Suite 405, Boise, Idaho 83702
p 208.258.2280 | e [email protected]
COPYRIGHT © 2024 Idaho freedom Foundation
magnifiercrossmenucross-circle linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram