January 2016

Nearing the Finish Line? Ohio Legislature Could Soon Enact OVR

The State of Ohio is nearing adoption of online voter registration after years of urging from the Secretary of State. If enacted, it will be evidence that dogged persistence pays – and will set off a dash to have it implemented in time for the November presidential election.

Hyattsville, MD to Consider Non-Citizen Voting in City Elections

Immigration and concerns about its impact may be a hot topic on the presidential campaign trail, but Hyattsville, MD’s city council is considering a plan to allow non-citizens residents to vote in municipal elections. There are policy and implementation questions involved, but it’s a discussion that may become increasingly common in other locations with large non-citizen populations.

Democracy Fund’s Natalie Adona: “How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Queueing Theory”

The Democracy Fund’s Natalie Adona has a great new blog post exploring queueing theory and the line management tools developed by experts and popularized by the PCEA. It’s well worth the read; moreover, the experience of using the tools (with or without real data) is a great introduction to what the theory tells us about predicting and preventing lines at the polls.

Michigan Governor Signs Straight-Ticket Ban, Urges Legislature to Enact No-Excuse Absentee

Michigan’s Governor recently signed a bill eliminating straight-ticket voting, but he (with the Secretary of State’s support) called upon the Legislature to enact no-excuse absentee voting in order to alleviate concerns about long lines at the polls. With some resistance in the Senate and the arrival of an election year and accompanying partisan rhetoric, that could be a tough ask.

EAC to Hold Roundtable on Preparations for 2016

This afternoon, the EAC will convene a roundtable where election officials from so-called “battleground” jurisdictions will discuss their preparations for 2016 and share ideas about how to survive – and thrive – in the fierce political environment of this already eventful presidential election.

Iowa Launches OVR System

Iowa is the latest state to launch its online voter registration system – but some advocates say it needs to be expanded to cover all eligible Iowans. Still, it’s impressive that the state has been able to develop and field the system in roughly a year after a period where voter fraud, not voter access, was the focus in the Secretary of State’s office.

In or Out? electionline Publishes 2016 List

Happy New Year! electionline is back with the 2016 edition of its election In and Out List – inspired by the Washington Post’s style list but full of grade-A election geekiness as we stand between looking back at the year that is past and ahead to the big election year to come.