Vivek Ramaswamy, the Republican tech entrepreneur running a long-shot campaign for president, doubled down Friday on his pledge to tighten voting laws if he is elected.
In his remarks in Ames, Iowa, he reiterated his promise to make English the only language on ballots. The language minority provisions of the Voting Rights Act prohibit such English-only ballots in many cases. His promise, which he has highlighted frequently in recent months, is one of many voting reforms that have become popular among Republican voters that he has seized on.
“One thing I will work with Congress to deliver is a minimal federal standard for our federal elections,” he told voters at the Friday event. That standard would include “single-day voting on Election Day, as a national holiday with paper ballots, government-issued voter ID to match the voter file, and yes, English as the sole language that appears on a ballot.”
Mr. Ramaswamy, who is polling far behind his Republican rivals in Iowa at fourth place, has long called for extraordinary rollbacks to voting rights in other ways as well. Early on in his campaign, he generated attention by calling for Americans under 25 to be barred from voting, unless they pass the civics test required of immigrants seeking citizenship or unless they serve in the U.S. military or as a first responder.
He said over the summer that had he been in former Vice President Mike Pence’s position on Jan. 6, 2021, he would not have certified Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s victory until Congress agreed to pass huge changes to the electoral system.
“In my capacity as president of the Senate, I would have led through that level of reform, then on that condition certified the election results,” he told NBC News in August.
Mr. Ramaswamy, the son of Indian immigrants, has also called for English to be made the national language in the country.
Leah McBride Mensching contributed reporting.
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