In contrast to many other states, Mass. works to ease path to voting booth

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Renée Loth’s “Prepare for voter whiplash” (Opinion, May 9) details the scourge of new laws in nearly 20 states that appear to be designed to disenfranchise many student, minority, and elderly would-be voters in November. Thankfully, Massachusetts is not one of these states.

In fact, we will be a national leader in voter modernization as the result of a law that goes into effect this year, which was supported by MassVOTE and signed by then-governor Deval Patrick. The Bay State will benefit from on-site early voting, online voter registration, and preregistration for 16- and 17-year-olds.

In a modern democracy, these things shouldn’t be considered luxuries, but Loth’s column shows how progressive they sound when compared with other states’ restrictions.

In Massachusetts, individuals now have up to 11 days to vote before the general election at designated early voting sites. This will be a huge benefit for the many busy parents and professionals who struggle to find time to vote.

These new measures are driven by a desire to increase voter participation in elections and specifically participation from young voters, lower-income communities, and communities of color. We are removing the excuses people give when they say they do not vote, rather than adding to those excuses.

Cheryl Clyburn Crawford

 

Photo Cred: PBS

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