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An overview of the bureaucratic barriers to becoming—and remaining—registered to vote.
The Debt-Free College Act of 2018 would create a new federal-state partnership that re-funds our neglected system of public colleges and job training.
As with any big reform, the push for debt-free college has been met with pushback among a skeptical elite. We have answers for their major concerns.
Why President Obama’s Fair Pay and Safe Workplace Executive Order must be implemented under the new administration.
Early voting provides a means for eligible voters to cast their ballots at a time and location other than in person on Election Day.
The Supreme Court got it supremely wrong when it held that corporations had the same rights as people to spend money in elections.
The NVRA was intended to make voter registration widely available at agencies serving the public, and is an important tool for modernizing voter registration.
Ensuring compliance with NVRA requirements increases voter registration rates, particularly among low-income populations.
Expanding the number of designated NVRA agencies can further expand the reach of voter registration opportunities.
Congress enacted the National Voter Registration Act (NVRA) in 1993 with the goal of making voter registration more convenient and accessible.
States should modernize registration procedures by allowing eligible voters to register to vote and update their registrations online.
Online registration saves states and localities money.
Registration rates among young voters increase with online registration.
These days, bank transfers, credit card transactions, and even medical record storage all happen online. These transactions are not only complicated but also highly sensitive, yet technology has managed to evolve to ensure the transactions are safe and secure, as well as convenient.
A person’s voter registration should remain valid when he or she moves within the state.
Centralized statewide voter registration databases are essential to provide portable registration.
Permanent and Portable registration helps narrow participation gaps among young people, people of color and lower-income Americans.
Twelve percent of Americans change their residence every year.1 Between 2011 and 2012, 22 million voting-age Americans moved either within the same county or to a different county within thei
Eligible 16 and 17 year olds should be pre-registered to vote and automatically added to voting rolls when they turn 18.
Targeted outreach to young eligible voters leads to substantial increases in voter registration.
Encouraging civic engagement at a young age leads to increased participation over a lifetime.
In the 2008 election, young people voted at the second-highest rate of all time.1 Voter turnout among 18-24 year olds grew by double digits from 2000 to 2008.
Third party voter registration drives are a critical component to ensuring eligible voters are registered.
States should permit third party registration drives without restrictive limitations.
Boards of elections should provide materials on voter registration to registration drives.
The National Voter Registration Act substantially increased the number of places where eligible voters could register. Now, voter registration is available at motor vehicle offices, public assistance agencies, and various other sites.
Early voting allows eligible voters more time to review issues and cast their ballot.
Early voting can increase voter participation.
States should expand early in-person voting locations and adopt no-excuse permanent absentee voting.
In a representative democracy like ours, the more people that vote, the stronger our democracy becomes. Given this truth, our voting procedures should provide the flexibility to accommodate every eligible person who wants to cast a ballot.
States should provide uniform poll worker training before Election Day to ensure Election Day runs smoothly.
Polls workers should receive a uniform wage across the state.
Poll worker recruitment should target public employees and high school and college students.
The formula for a well-run polling place is not complicated. At the heart of it, a sufficient number of properly trained poll workers is necessary to smoothly run an election process.
Ballot design should be simple and straightforward to ensure voters understand for whom and for what they are casting their votes.
Ballots should be written in clear, plain language.
Ballot design should focus on the ABCs: Accuracy, Brevity and Clarity.
It seems almost too basic to have to state that the ballots used for voting must be simple and straightforward. Yet, past experience has shown that ballot confusion is common and can have disastrous consequences.
Overly burdensome photo ID laws add an unnecessary layer of bureaucracy that disenfranchises millions of otherwise eligible voters.
Photo ID requirements place tremendous fiscal burdens on states and localities.
States should look to their constitutions to protect the freedom to vote from onerous ID laws.
Restrictive photo ID laws for voting are a level of unnecessary red tape and bureaucracy that hinder the freedom to vote. Strict laws that require narrow types of government-issued ID go above and beyond normal registration requirements.
Provisional ballots are not counted as regular ballots and should be used in only very limited situations.
Provisional ballots cast solely because an eligible voter voted in the wrong precinct or polling place should be counted as a regular ballot for any office for which the voter was eligible to vote.
Adopting Same Day Registration would substantially decrease the need for provisional ballots because eligible voters can simply re-register if there are registration issues.
The scenario occurs regularly on Election Day: a voter will show up at t
Nearly six million people are denied the right to vote due to felony offenses, even if they have completed their sentences.
One out of every 13 eligible African Americans of voting age has lost their right to vote.
States should not permanently take away the freedom to vote from any citizen. At a bare minimum, the right to vote should be automatically restored once a person is released from incarceration.
Prohibiting citizens from voting defies our democracy’s principle of one person, one vote.
Voter intimidation and misinformation campaigns have significantly increased in recent years. They are toxic to democracy.