Analysis

How Voting Will Be Easier for Most This Election Season

States tap into technology to increase access, information

More than 135 million Americans can register to vote and update their information online© iStockphoto

More than 135 million Americans can register to vote and update their information online.

In most states, voting is easier and more convenient than ever, thanks to modern technology. Millions of Americans will be able to take advantage of online voter registration as well as tools and apps to quickly access official information throughout the presidential election season.

More states offer online voter registration

Online voter registration allows eligible citizens to easily and securely register to vote and update their information via secure government websites. The availability of online registration has grown dramatically in recent years. Arizona became the first state to adopt it in 2002, and only two states offered it in 2008. By the 2012 presidential election, however, that figure had increased to 13 states, and today, 30 states and the District of Columbia offer voters the option to register and update their information online.

More than 135 million Americans can register to vote and update their information online.

Access to voting tools and information significantly expands

The Voting Information Project (VIP) is a partnership between The Pew Charitable Trusts, the states, and Google to ensure that U.S. voters can find the information they need, such as precinct locations and ballot content, where they look for it most: via search engines and mobile devices. VIP provides free, customizable applications and tools—including text messaging and smartphone apps—to campaigns, state and local governments, third-party organizations, voters, and others.

This month, VIP will support the delivery of official voting information for elections in Arizona, Florida, Idaho, Illinois, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, and Virginia. In all, the project will support more than 70 elections in 2016, including the presidential primaries and general election, statewide primaries in 40 states, runoffs where applicable, and dozens of local and municipal races across the country.

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