#AVRinMA: Jeanne Atkins' Expert Briefing

Jeanne Atkins, at the State House during a legislative briefing.  Fantastic!   

Jeanne Atkins, at the State House during a legislative briefing.  Fantastic!   

Bottom Line: Markey and Brodeur, both key leaders, are in the house.  32 House Dems still aren't.  Click HERE to help.

Update: Four weeks after H.2091 was voted out favorably, the House clerk still hasn't released it. Apparently bills are stored like papyrus scrolls in molasses jars from Costco.  (Actually nothing's wrong, they're released in order, but only 5 day come out.)  Tick, tock, tick, tock. We've got the text, though. The Republicans added something unrelated to AVR that the clerks wanted.  Not everyone's happy with that, but it may be what H.2091 needs to pass. 

Wonderfully, Jeanne Atkins, the former Oregon Secretary of State, came to do a legislative briefing.  She was the first SoS to implement AVR and you couldn't miss the courage, persistence, and emotional intelligence with which she led ALL stakeholders to come together.  She travelled to ALL the clerks' offices; she talked to domestic violence victims' advocates to ensure their info would remain protected.  Jeanne didn't dismiss problems, but rather, talked about how they solved them.  About 75 people came -- mostly aides, but also some legislators. Jeanne also did some wonderful publicity.   Among the many takeaways:


  • They did a "reach back" to pull in people who had been registered in
    the 2 years before implementation.  We're not doing that.  But, she
    did go carefully through the process of how they check citizenship.

  • The rolls got far more accurate, and clerks faced far less work.

  • Turnout went up by about 4% -- not in the primary, but in the election.

  • And this slide, which is so, so encouraging:

How A Mass. 'Motor Voter' Law Could Work
Two bills pending at the Massachusetts State House would change voter registration. One would allow same-day voter registration and the other that would allow the automatic registration of eligible voters — a so called "motor voter" law. We talk to the former Oregon Secretary of State about their first-in-the-nation automatic voter registration system. | WBUR | MARCH 2018


Jeanne Atkins, former Oregon secretary of state and current head of the Democratic Party of Oregon.