DeLuca highlights voting modernization bills

HARRISBURG, June 13 –State Rep. Tony DeLuca, D-Allegheny, joined a number of state representatives and senators to offer a series of bills to update and modernize Pennsylvania’s voting rules.

DeLuca featured H.B. 945, which would create a process to allow same-day voter registration and H.B. 946 which would create an early voting window.

“During the May primary election, only about 17 percent of all eligible Allegheny County voters found the time to go to the polls,” DeLuca said. “Our democracy only works when we, the people, vote.

“The District of Columbia and 13 states now have same-day registration. The opportunity to register on Election Day can raise voter participation dramatically. Those states and Washington, D.C. had a voter participation rate of 68.8 percent in 2012, more than 10 percent higher than states without that option.

“More than two thirds of the states also have an early-voting window. My bill would permit early voting from 15 days before the election through the day before Election Day. More than 30 percent of all the votes in the last two presidential elections were cast during early voting periods,” DeLuca said.

Both bills are currently awaiting further consideration in the House State Government Committee.

Other bills highlighted by others at the media event aimed at improving voter turnout are focused on automatic voter registration, no-excuses absentee voting and providing paid time off to vote.