Thousands apply to register to vote after lawsuit
BATON ROUGE – Nearly 30,000 low-income Louisianans have recently applied to register to vote at public agency offices, according to a new report released by the U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC). This represents a dramatic increase in applications and is the result of a successful lawsuit brought by voting rights groups to bring the state into compliance with the National Voter Registration Act (NVRA) of 1993.
The NVRA requires that public agencies that provide public assistance, such as food stamps, Medicaid, and other programs, also proactively offer their clients the opportunity to register to vote every time they apply for benefits, recertify, or change their addresses. In 2011, Project Vote and its partners began investigating Louisiana’s dismal voter registration numbers at public agencies, which suggested that the state was failing to comply with this important law.
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