Legislators introduce online voter registration bill

Registration to vote forms can be picked up at a variety of public offices or downloaded online. (Photo: MGNOnline)

Authored By matt.pulford

Two state legislators filed a bill today that would, if enacted, establish an online voter registration system for Tennesseans.

Under the proposed legislation, voters with an unexpired Tennessee driver’s license or personal ID card issued by the Department of Safety would be able to go to a state website to register to vote. The application would be viewed electronically, according to a Senate Republican Caucus news release.

Validation for online voter registration would be done by comparing the new information in the voter application against the information provided by the same individual when he or she received a driver’s license or ID, the news release said.

If the information does not match, the applicant would be asked to print and complete the application by hand, and then they would mail it to their county election commission to be processed, the news release said.

If the information is confirmed to be valid, a county election commission office would review the new registration and add it to the voter registration list, the news release said.

House Majority Leader Gerald McCormick (R-Chattanooga) and Senate State and Local Government Committee Chairman Ken Yager (R-Kingston) are sponsoring the bill.

“Online voter registration supplements the traditional paper-based registration process and will help encourage more Tennesseans to become involved in the political process,” McCormick said in a prepared statement. “We serve at the will of the people and I look forward to having even more constituents provide their input on important legislative decisions made within the General Assembly.”

There are currently 29 states plus the District of Columbia that offer online registration, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.