DMV, Merrill to implement automatic voter registration to comply with federal law

VoteAqui_488_318_86_sha-40_488_318_99HARTFORD, Conn. – Under threat of a lawsuit from the U.S. Department of Justice, the state Department of Motor Vehicles and the Secretary of State agreed to come up with a plan to automatically register drivers to vote when they go to the DMV.

Under the current program, which according to the federal government violates the National Voter Registration Act of 1993, a customer is registered to vote only if he or she chooses that option.

A federal investigation found that Connecticut’s Department of Motor Vehicles was failing a majority of the time to offer voters a chance to register when they applied for driver’s licenses or state-issued identification cards.

See the complete story at CT News Junkie.


2 responses to “DMV, Merrill to implement automatic voter registration to comply with federal law”

  1. Stuart Wells

    Good idea, but will cause many problems that will be difficult to resolve.
    People lie to the DMV about their address in order to save on car taxes and insurance.
    Even if a person is truthful, he or she can legitimately have one address for DMV purposes (mom and/or dad’s house) and another for voting (college dorm room).
    A lot of voters use slightly different versions of their name on different documents particularly involving nicknames. This will swell the voter roles with duplicate registrations such as “Robert Smith” and “Bob Smith”. It takes a lot of time to find these duplicates and you’ll never get them all.
    DMV decides how your name appears on it’s records, not you. Mine, for example, has the suffix “3rd” but I always use the traditional roman numeral “III”. No accents are allowed with letters, so “José” becomes “Jose” and “Peña” becomes “Pena”. Why does the DMV get to say what your name is and not you?
    DMV records are secret so we cannot check the original DMV documents to resolve discrepancies.
    Every Registrar of Voters in the state has a long list of DMV stories. Our most recent one is the DMV mailing voter registration cards to the Norwalk Registrar of Voters with an address at the city hall in Old Lyme, CT. Fortunately, the Old Lyme registrars office faxed them to us (and mailed the originals) in time for the recent Presidential Primary.
    Stuart Wells, Norwalk Registrar of Voters

  2. Lisbeth Blue

    Getting people to register is sometimes difficult. However, the real problems is to get people out to vote. Look at the lousy turn for the presidential primary — less than 28% bothered to go out. Look at Stamford’s primary yesterday, maybe 7,000 people voted.

    Connecticut is a bit hidebound in modernizing the system. Only same day voting, and constant elections. Why not give us say a full week to vote and consolidate the many election into one every two years? I’m sure the citizens would be happy to have to worry about the 20 or so people on the town councils, common council, mayors, and then state representatives, national representatives, governor, president, etc every two years

    It is a waste of money to have constant elections. Little wonder the citizens are tired or is that indifferent?

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