Political Foes Team Up To Improve Voter Registration

Publication: NPR's All Things Considered


11/09/2009 - In this lull between major elections, advisers from recent Republican and Democratic presidential campaigns have joined together to try to come up with a better way to register voters.

An estimated 2 million Americans were unable to vote in last year's elections because of problems with their registration. Others didn't even bother to register because it was too difficult.

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Doug Chapin with the Pew Center on the States says one idea for overhauling voter registrations is to have an individual's voter record be more portable and be automatically updated when he or she moves. Chapin says that could eliminate a lot of confusion at the polls.

"Election offices are swamped with thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, of registration applications. And then they have a very small amount of time to turn those piles of paper into voter rolls, all the while checking eligibility, putting voters in the right precinct," Chapin says.

Listen to the audio broadcast Political Foes Team Up To Improve Voter Registration on NPR's Web site.

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