Call Your Legislator for Election Reform

Last week the Massachusetts Election Laws Committee eviscerated what could have been the most comprehensive election modernization bill in decades. The bill (H3647) is now missing a half-dozen important reforms and only includes online voter registration and a very weak version of early voting. This is a mere baby step for better elections when what we need is a giant leap.  

Early voting:  H.3647 allows early voting only in Presidential elections and primaries starting in 2016; requires only one early-voting location for all towns and cities, no matter how large; and allows early voting only on weekdays during regular business hours.

We believe (1) early voting should be available for state and municipal elections, as well as Presidential elections; (2) early voting should be available in multiple locations in larger cities and towns, and (3) early voting should include some evening hours and at least one weekend before an election.

Post-Election Audits: H.3647 does not include a provision for audits, calling only for a task force to study the issue, despite the fact audits are already being done in 26 other states and the Massachusetts House has already passed audit bills in the past.

We believe the Legislature should restore a provision for audits to the election laws legislation to increase voter confidence in the reliability of the voting system. 

Pre-registration of 16- and 17-year olds: H.3647 does not contain a provision to pre-register 16 and 17-year olds to vote.

We believe the Legislature should restore a provision for pre-registration of 16- and 17-year-olds.

Election Day Registration:  This is the only election reform that actually increases turnout and makes voting easier for historically marginalized people.

We believe the Legislature should pass Election Day Registration.

Look up your Legislators here.

Tell them to add early voting, post-election audits, pre-registration for teens and election day registration to H3647.  The record their response.

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