Irrational Fear of Voter Fraud Inspires Irresponsible Election Reform

Cross-Posted at Project Vote's Voting Matter's Blog

Weekly Voting Rights News Update

by Erin Ferns

Nationwide, budget concerns seem to be rendering most of this year's threatening election reform proposals impassable. However, that does not prevent these measures from perpetuating the irrational distrust in elections (and voters) that come with restrictive voter ID and voter registration proposals. Instead of focusing on resolutions that would create more transparency in election administration without disenfranchising voters, lawmakers in Oklahoma, Minnesota, Mississippi and Texas made headlines for their battles to move voter ID laws last week, while two more states are discussing bills that would negatively impact young voters.

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Most "Devastating" Election Reform Gains Support in Georgia

Cross-Posted at Project Vote's Voting Matter's Blog

Weekly Voting Rights News Update

by Erin Ferns

If you wanted to register to vote today, would you be able to provide a copy of a birth certificate, U.S. passport or naturalization papers? Would those documents reflect your current name?

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Several States Debating Election Day Registration to Expand Access to the Polls

Cross-Posted at Project Vote's Voting Matter's Blog

Weekly Voting Rights News Update

by Erin Ferns

Election Day Registration has been the subject of election reform debates for decades and the year following one of the most historic presidential elections makes no exception. As lawmakers in at least 16 states hope to expand access to voter registration and effectively increase voter participation, skeptics of such reforms raise the fear of voter fraud. Today, 10 states successfully practice Same-Day Registration (either on Election Day or during an early voting period), with above-average turnout rates and no reported problems with voter fraud. For those states considering EDR, the decision to efficiently expand access to democracy should be clear.

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All Cost, No Benefit: States Aim to Raise Voting Barriers to Prevent Rare Crime

Cross-Posted at Project Vote's Voting Matter's Blog

Weekly Voting Rights News Update

by Erin Ferns

As we predicted last December, legislation designed to prevent so-called voter fraud has dominated election law debates in several states this year. Last week alone, Georgia's controversial voter ID law was upheld by a federal appeals panel, the Texas Senate "sparked deep partisan tensions" by eliminating the majority rule in order to aid the passage of a voter ID law, and nine more states introduced numerous voter ID bills.

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Disenfranchisement Reform: Lawmakers Move Toward Expanding Voting Rights in 2009

Cross-Posted at Project Vote's Voting Matter's Blog

Weekly Voting Rights News Update

by Erin Ferns

The 2008 presidential election was an inspiration for many citizens to take part in the American democratic process, including first-time voter and convicted felon Eric Stephen Willems of Minnesota. Unfortunately, that vote cost Willems, who was on probation, a trip back to jail, according to the Associated Press last week.

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