VRM in the States: Electronic Registration
Electronic Registration, sometimes known as Automated Registration, is a key component of Voter Registration Modernization. This gives citizens the choice to be electronically registered to vote at the same time they do business with a government office, such as apply for a driver’s license or state veterans’ benefits, by digitally transferring their voter registration information to the appropriate elections office. This will upgrade our system, eliminate errors caused by paper records, and clean up the voter rolls.
- At least 33 states — Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Nebraska, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, and West Virginia — currently or will soon have fully or substantially electronic voter registration at DMVs. When voters register or update their information at DMVs, the information is electronically transmitted to election officials.
- Currently, at least 23 states have a full electronic registration system in that no paper is exchanged between DMVs and election officials. These full electronic registration states include Arizona, Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Mississippi, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Texas, Washington, and West Virginia. Four states have a partial electronic registration system, whereby DMVs electronically transfer at least some registration information, but have not completely eliminated the transfer of separate paper forms. These partial electronic registration states include California, Kentucky, Michigan, and South Carolina. Illinois, Nebraska, and Oregon have passed but not yet implemented electronic registration.
- At least three states, Delaware, Illinois, and Kentucky, have, or soon will have, electronic registration at social service agencies in addition to the DMV.
- 38 state DMVs automatically register all eligible young men for the Selective Service, as do a variety of other federal and state agencies.
- Thanks to a 2002 federal law, the Help America Vote Act, every state now has (or soon will have) a computerized statewide voter registration database capable of sharing information in some form with other government databases.