Government Agency Registration

Who Should Register Americans to Vote? Their Government

When the National Voter Registration Act (NVRA) was passed in 1993, it was heralded as a watershed in voting rights law. It was popularly known as the “motor voter” law, because—in addition to other important provisions—the NVRA requires voter registration services to be provided through venues where citizens regularly interact with their government: motor vehicle offices, public assistance agencies, and other government outlets.

This expansion of voter registration opportunities was expected to usher in a new era of universal, or nearly universal, enfranchisement and political participation. And indeed, in the first two years of implementation, the NVRA contributed to one of the largest expansions of the voter rolls in American history.

In the 20 years since the law went into effect, however, it has become all too common for states to neglect or ignore the requirements of the NVRA. This means that millions of Americans—particularly low-income, minority, and disabled citizens who are already underrepresented in the electorate—have been illegally denied their federally-mandated opportunity to register to vote.

Project Vote and our partners—including Demos, the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, and other civil rights organizations—work to rectify this problem. Through advocacy, technical assistance, and—where necessary—litigation, we are ensuring that state agencies fulfill their responsibilities and help realize the full promise of the NVRA.

 

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Action NC et al v. Strach (North Carolina)

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In December 2015, Project Vote and partners sued the state of North Carolina for widespread violations of the National Voter Registration Act (NVRA). Read more

Black Political Empowerment Project v. Aichele (Pennsylvania)

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In July 2012, Project Vote and its partners filed a Complaint against officials in Pennsylvania alleging that that the state had systematically failed to comply with Section 7 of the National Voter Registration Act (NVRA). Read more

National Council of La Raza v. Miller (Nevada)

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In June 2012, Project Vote and its partners filed a Complaint against Nevada's Secretary of State and the state's Department of Health & Human Services, alleging that the state has systematically failed to comply with the National Voter Registration Act (NVRA). Read more

Georgia NAACP v. Kemp (2011)

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In June 2011 Project Vote and partners filed a lawsuit against officials in Georgia over violations of Section 7 of the National Voter Registration Act (NVRA). Read more

Scott v. Schedler (Louisiana)

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In April 2011 Project Vote and partners filed a lawsuit against officials in Louisiana for widespread violations of Section 7 of the National Voter Registration Act (NVRA). Read more

Indiana State Conference of NAACP v. Gargano (Indiana)

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In October 2009 Project Vote and its partners filed suit against officials in Indiana for violations of the National Voter Registration Act of 1993 (NVRA). Read more

Valdez v. Duran (New Mexico)

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In July 2009, Project Vote and its partners filed suit against officials in New Mexico for violations of the National Voter Registration Act of 1993 (NVRA) Read more

ACORN v. Levy (Missouri)

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ACORN v. Levy (formerly ACORN v. Scott) is a lawsuit filed in Kansas City, Missouri charging Deborah Scott, director of... Read more

Harkless v. Brunner (Ohio)

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In September 2006 Project Vote and partners filed a lawsuit against officials in the state of Ohio alleging widespread violations of Section 7 of the National Voter Registration Act (NVRA). Read more