The governor announced he’ll sign an automatic voter registration bill in Trenton on Tuesday.
There’s about to be a lot more registered voters in the state of New Jersey, which already has 5.8 million people on its rolls.
Gov. Phil Murphy said Monday he will sign into law a bill that would automatically register people to vote if they apply for a driver’s license or non-driver ID card in the Garden State. Murphy said in a tweet that he will sign the legislation on Tuesday.
The bill was rejected in the past by former Gov. Chris Christie. But the state’s new governor said in a tweet that “in the age of President (Donald) Trump and voter suppression, states must expand, not just protect, voting rights.”
In the age of President Trump and voter suppression, states must expand, not just protect, voting rights.
That’s why tomorrow I will sign into law among the most expansive Automatic Voter Registration policies in the nation to empower New Jerseyans to make their voices heard.
— Governor Phil Murphy (@GovMurphy) April 16, 2018
The soon-to-be law, which was passed by both chambers of the Legislature last week, also goes beyond trips to the Motor Vehicle Commission.
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It would also allow any state agency that collects documents and personal data to “establish a procedure to automatically register people to vote.”
Technically, that means the state welfare department and parole board could choose to do so — though people on parole for a felony conviction cannot vote at all under state law. Other parolees would not be allowed to vote until after they finished their sentences.
The state Motor Vehicle Commission would be the only agency required to implement automatic registration. It would be optional for other agencies.
New Jersey has 2,375,773 unaffiliated voters, 2,139,201 Democrats and 1,247,740 registered Republicans, according to the latest Division of Election numbers. There are another 37,437 registered voters in seven other party affiliations.
NJ Advance Media staff writer Brent Johnson contributed to this report.
Matt Arco may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @MatthewArco or Facebook.
Source:: New Jersey Real-Time News