Sen. Justin Wayne of Omaha on Wednesday introduced legislation designed to increase voter participation by authorizing all counties to conduct all elections by mail. Wayne, a freshman lawmaker, said he intends to amend his bill (LB619) to couple mail elections with establishment of a few voting centers to retain the option of voting in-person for Nebraskans who wish to participate in the traditional manner of casting their ballots at polling sites. Mail balloting would increase access to voter participation by “people without transportation, disabled people, those who are working three jobs, workers who need easier access to the right to vote,” Wayne said.
Recent consideration of the option of moving to a vote-by-mail system has been fueled in part by the aging of election machinery throughout the state. Some counties have said that the cost of replacing that technology would be prohibitive.
Wayne said he and fellow freshman Sen. Tony Vargas of Omaha are proposing a range of legislation designed to increase voter participation.
One of the bills proposed by Vargas would provide for automatic electronic voter registration in conjunction with application for motor vehicle driver’s licenses.