The Rapidian

Promote the Vote: A ballot initiative to improve Michigan's voting system

Michigan, once a leader in voting rights, is in desperate need of reforming its voting system. A ballot initiative called Promote the Vote seeks to to amend the Michigan constitution to update our system to make voting more accessible, fair, and secure.

Promote the Vote

Let’s make 2018 the year we fix Michigan's outdated voting processes and join the majority of Americans who enjoy a system that allows their voices to be heard.

 

/Amanda Sterling

Did you know that Michiganders lack the same access to the ballot enjoyed by residents of nearly every other state in the country? Early and multi-day voting, automatic voter registration, and no excuse absentee voting are just some of the ways other states have improved their voting systems. Let’s make 2018 the year we fix our antiquated voting processes and join the majority of Americans who enjoy a system that allows their voices to be heard.

Over 40 years ago Michigan made a bold move to increase voter turnout and registration by implementing the country’s first motor voter law. This innovation provided prospective voters an opportunity to register to vote when they obtained or renewed their driver’s license. Sadly, since then, despite advances in technology and connectivity, Michigan has fallen to the bottom of the pack and has failed to implement common-sense reforms that put voters first. Promote the Vote intends to fix that! This ballot initiative, sponsored by the American Civil Liberties Union, the League of Women Voters, the NAACP, and the Michigan League for Public Policy, must collect 315,654 valid petition signatures from registered Michigan voters by July 8 in order to put the issue on the November 6, 2018 ballot. If successful, this constitutional amendment will:

  • Protect the right to vote a secret ballot
  • Ensure military service members and overseas voters get their ballots in time for their votes to count
  • Provide voters with the option to vote straight party
  • Automatically register citizens to vote at the Secretary of State’s office unless the citizen declines
  • Allow a citizen to register to vote by mail or in person until 15 days before an election. After that, citizens may register to vote in person with proof of residency up to and on Election Day
  • Provide all registered voters access to an absentee ballot for any reason
  • Ensure the accuracy and integrity of elections by auditing election results

If you want to help move Michigan forward on this critical issue, please visit www.PromoteTheVoteMI.com to learn about volunteer opportunities and to find out where you can sign the petition. We need all the help we can get to move Michigan back to its role as a leader by making voting more accessible, secure, fair and by ultimately ensuring that our laws better reflect the will of the people. Let’s get this done! Democracy needs us.

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