National Voter Registration Act
On May 20th, 1993 President Bill Clinton signed the National Voter Registration Act of 1993. This requires each state to create voter registration procedures for registering while applying for (or renewing) a driver’s license, mail registration, and in-person registration. In addition, the act authorizes states to require first-time voters to vote in-person if they do not have an extenuating circumstance and requires states to designate voter registration agencies. Furthermore, the act creates several procedural regulations for the registration process and prevents states from removing voters from the registration rolls if they fail to vote or move (barring written notification of the move, or failure to respond to a notice from the registrar). Finally, the act requires the U.S. attorney to notify the state’s chief election official of all felony convictions, requires each state to designate a chief election official, and creates criminal penalties for anyone who tries to manipulate the voting or registering process.

This act has had a significant impact on voter registration. In the first quarter of 1995 (when the act was implemented), two million new voters were registered. Georgia registered 180,000 voters in a three-month period, compared to 85,000 for the entire preceding year. In the first quarter, Florida registered 400,000. In addition, during the first year of implementation, 40% of newly registered voters were under the age of 30. Finally, the two-year period after implementation witnessed one of the largest registration increases in American history. Indeed, the National Voter Registration Act has been instrumental in broadening the base of American democracy.

Read the NVRA  
Recent Articles
October 19th 2009
Mandatory Voting? Automatic Registration? How Un-American!
Huffington Post

President of Air America Media, Mark Green, explains why Instant Runoff Voting, Automatic Registration and Mandatory Voting are not only important but could lead to a more democratic society.

September 30th 2009
Can a 17-year-old register to vote? It depends
Ventura County Star

"Most Californians register to vote not because a political cause has touched their heart, but rather because they checked a box on a form at the Department of Motor Vehicles when they received or renewed their driverís license."

September 27th 2009
Giving teens a civic voice
The Fayetteville Observer

In January, North Carolina will become the third state to implement FairVote-endorsed youth preregistration.

September 8th 2009
Give voters final say on vacancies
Politico

The two legislators proposing a constitutional amendment mandating elections to fill Senate vacancies make their case in the pages of Politico.