When it comes to achieving one of Governor-elect Chris Sununu’s top priorities – reforming New Hampshire’s election laws – the Newfields Republican is presented with a troublesome bargain. It’s possible that he could convince the Republican-led Legislature to get rid of the state’s same day voter registration law which he says is too “loose” and makes us more vulnerable to fraud. But in so doing, he’ll likely have to accept even more expansive and expensive access for the public to register to vote, a trade off which many of his fellow conservatives will not like. “This presents a whole host of not only expensive, several million dollars to pay for it, but a lot of undesirable things as well,” said State Rep. David Bates, R-Windham, who has authored more than a dozen other bills to overhaul election laws in 2017. “I don’t think it would resolve the concerns but it would introduce other problems.”
Senate Democratic Leader Jeff Woodburn, D-Dalton, is the ranking minority member of the Senate Election Law Committee. Senate Republicans created this new panel to underscore how serious the GOP is about changing things.
“We are open to suggestions. We are open to changes. We aren’t sticking our fingers in our ears, but we are skeptical given the accusations that there is fraud in elections,” Woodburn said.