Monday, October 12, 2015

Why you'd think California's leaders wanted the people to vote!

Might this plea become obsolete?
A law signed on Saturday should increase voter turnout, not instantly, but gradually.

Governor Jerry Brown approved a measure to make voter registration an "opt-out" part of the Department of Motor Vehicles process of issuing or renewing drivers licenses. Unless you say you don't want to be able to vote, when you come away from the DMV, you'll be on the voter rolls.

Oregon uses such a system. Several other states allow people to register on election day. But California is more than 10 times larger and more heterogenous than any of the states that currently make voter registration easy and automatic.

But come on: we live in a society where privacy is on its death bed and big corporations know everything about us. Surely the government can keep a good enough database to allow citizens to participate without having to file additional, antiquated paper work. And now California is saying, let's give this a try! A big try.

The measure won't go into full effect until the state further cleans up its records. Historically, that's not been an easy task, but completion is now promised in time for the 2016 June primary.

Brown also signed other measures to allow more early voting and to ease drop off procedures for mail-in ballots.

People will still need to be convinced that there is a reason to vote -- but we're moving toward the day when, if a citizen decides to participate, doing so will be easy.

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