State of Elections

William & Mary Law School | Election Law Society

Tag: online voter registration

It’s Time for the Wild West to Join the 21st Century: An Argument for Implementing Online Voter Registration in Wyoming

By: Timmer McCroskey

In 2016, I was a young 20-year-old attending Arizona State University. When election season arrived, I decided to register in Wyoming as I still considered Wyoming my primary domicile. As all my Arizona friends around me registered to vote online or by filling out one of the many clipboards passed through campus, I was surprised to learn the only way to register outside of Wyoming was by printing out a form and then taking all my proper identification to a notary for authorization. Finding a notary, especially one that would do it for free (hello poor college student), was surprisingly difficult and took time and energy away from school. After taking the papers to the notary I then sent them to my local county clerk’s office, only for them not to be processed by the deadline. I could have flown back to Wyoming the day of the election and registered at my polling place, but that was unreasonable, expensive and time-consuming. Being my first primary election, I was shocked that I was being turned away from voting for such arbitrary and archaic requirements.

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Florida Online Voter Registration: Cybersecurity vs. Burdening Eligible Voters

By: Alannah Shubrick

In 2015, the Florida Legislature passed a bill permitting Floridians to register online to vote. Two years later, registertovoteflorida.gov  finally went live in October. Now, Florida is one among 35 states that allow voters the option to register to vote online. The new online voter-registration system is part of broad efforts across the state to modernize the Florida voter registration system and enable all eligible Floridians to join the electorate.

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West Virginia’s Relentless March to Expand Voter Registration

By: Jordan Smith 

West Virginia is undergoing what appears to be a voter registration revolution as the state legislature continues to make strides to simplify access to the ballot box.  The following post aims to discuss these advancements in an effort to summarize the current state of voter registration in the Mountain State. 

In 2013, former-Governor Earl Ray Tomblin, signed into law SB 477, which amended the state constitution to allow for online voter registration (OVR).  The state was not quick to implement the OVR system, as the Secretary of State’s Office did not unveil an official program until the latter half of 2015.  In essence, the now-implemented OVR application requires a registrant to supply the same information required on the paper registration cards: full name, birthdate, location, citizenship status, last four digits of the registrant’s social security number, and the registrant’s driver’s license/state-issued ID number.  If a registrant does not have a state-issued ID or driver’s license, they must instead complete and submit a standard paper form.  As a result,  while OVR streamlines the process for certain registrants, it does so only for those who would likely have already taken advantage of the “motor voter” provisions of the National Voter Registration Act of 1993 or the state’s newer electronic voter registration system at the Department of Motor Vehicles.     
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Tennessee Looks to Encourage Voter Turnout With Some Help from the Digital Age

By: Caroline Drinnon

As of September 2017, Tennessee joined the ranks of another 35 states, plus the District of Colombia, in enacting an online voter registration system. Following a 2016 law that mandated an online voter registration system be in place by July (later extended to September) of 2017, the Tennessee Secretary of State’s office officially opened the website on September 1. Proponents of the system believe that it will streamline the registration system, reduce clerical errors, and lower taxpayer costs of the process. The registration process can be found here and requires a Tennessee driver’s license or Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security ID to be completed.

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