A Virginia voter registration bill that threatened eligible citizens is no longer a threat.
Today, Governor McAuliffe vetoed SB 1581, stating that it was “a flawed application denial process will only increase the potential to disenfranchise eligible voters and stretch the limited resources of local elections officials.”
The bill would have put a voter applicant’s registration status at risk over data entry errors, typos, and other issues that are no fault of the applicant.
“This requirement, while in the guise of ‘verification,’ would actually prevent eligible Virginia citizens from voting,” wrote Michelle Kanter Cohen, Project Vote’s election counsel, in a letter to the governor late last month.
In Project Vote’s letter, Ms. Kanter Cohen warned that a similar voter match system in Georgia led to the wrongful disenfranchisement of thousands of voters because it depended on flawed data and lacked safeguards or opportunities to cure errors.
We applaud Governor McAuliffe for protecting the rights of eligible Virginia voters and rejecting SB 1581.