Support National Automatic Voter Registration

Women showing women how to vote in 1935.

Target: Federal Election Commission Chair, Ann Ravel

Goal: Automatically register American citizens to vote when they register a vehicle or sign up for a driver’s license.

Most democracies use government to register voters so they can have the most complete and accurate voter list. In contrast, our system of government abandons voter registration to a hodge podge of partisan and non-partisan organizations which can miss a lot of people and/or create confusing duplicates. In contrast, most democracies prefer a simple and automatic process that registers a citizen when they reach voting age as well as every person who becomes a citizen. At the same time, government officials actively work to register any citizens who might still be missed so they don’t leave anyone out. Tell the Federal Election Commission (FEC) Chair, Ann Ravel, that the best protection a democracy can have is universal registration.

Voter registration should not be used as a barrier to voting and automatic voter registration is the best way to fight voter suppression. That’s why it’s become part of Hillary Clinton’s campaign for President. If we automatically registered voters when they registered their car, it would significantly expand the number of eligible voters. There’s a bill in Congress that would accomplish this and the technology is already in place to enable automatic voter registration.

Oregon was the first state to offer automatic voter registration. Ohio and Rhode Island are moving ahead with it, Louisiana passed a bill to study it, and the New Jersey legislature has said it is going to institute it despite opposition from Governor Chris Christie who dismissed it as expanding the opportunity for fraud. However, the reality is exactly the opposite: All the evidence about automatic voter registration, in other democracies, is that it produces less duplication and greater accuracy.

The fact is, modern political campaigns have grown very sophisticated at directing messages to those already on the voter rolls. Campaigns don’t think about unregistered voters or their issues when they should be thinking about all their constituents. Urge the FEC to support a national system of automatic voter registration and move this country into the 21st century by signing the petition below.


Dear FEC Chair Ravel,

Most democracies find automatic voter registration produces less duplication and more accuracy than our system, which uses a hodge podge of partisan and non-partisan organizations to register voters. Universal registration is the best protection a democracy can have and we should always aim for perpetuating our democracy by increasing participation. The technology that could enable automatic voter registration whenever someone registered a car or got a license is already in place. Most democracies around the world use some form of automatic voter registration and we need to institute it on a national basis in the United States.

Modern political campaigns are more and more sophisticated at refining and directing their messages only at registered voters and ignoring those who aren’t registered. To be unregistered is a major disadvantage, but the unregistered don’t realize this. A number of states are passing laws to enable automatic voter registration, but we should do it on a national level. I urge the FEC to support a system of automatic voter registration and move this country into the 21st century.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: International Ladies Garment Workers Union Photographs

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