Online voter registration bills head to governor

NOVEMBER 9, 2018

Secretary Johnson thanks lawmakers for
bipartisan support of secure online registration technology

Secretary of State Ruth Johnson today thanked state lawmakers giving final approval to a secure online voter registration application, an initiative she has long championed. The measure now goes to the governor for consideration.

“Our online services have handled millions of transactions accurately and securely, and now is the time to allow Michigan residents the convenience of registering to vote online,” Johnson said.

The state Senate on Thursday approved with overwhelming bipartisan support House changes to legislation that would create online voter registration. Bill sponsors are Sens. Judy Emmons, Goeff Hansen, Dave Hildebrand, Mike Nofs and Jim Stamas. Reps. Julie Calley and Michael Webber also sponsored online voter registration bills in the House.

Throughout Johnson’s tenure as Secretary of State, she has sought ways to use technology to improve and streamline Secretary of State services. The online services at ExpressSOS.com allows customers to complete just about any transaction online. Launched in 2011, the service offers such conveniences as change of address, duplicate vehicle titles, and vehicle registration and driver’s license renewals over the Internet. In Fiscal Year 2017, ExpressSOS.com processed more than 2.2 million transactions online.

As the state’s chief election officer, Johnson has put in place initiatives to clean up Michigan’s voter rolls, toughen campaign finance laws and ensure integrity in the elections process. Johnson endorses online voter registration because it adds greater efficiency while protecting the veracity and security of the elections process.

Under the proposed legislation:

  • Original voter registration applications could be submitted online using ExpressSOS.com
  • The online voter registration system would automatically check that a potential voter is of the correct age and otherwise eligible to vote by cross-referencing the voter registration application information through the state’s driver licensing and state ID files
  • Signatures would be captured through the Secretary of State’s driver licensing and state ID database

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For media questions, please call Fred Woodhams at 517-373-2520.

Customers may call the Department of State Information Center to speak to a customer-service representative at 888-SOS-MICH (767-6424).