A showdown over residency and voting rights is expected to begin when the New Hampshire Senate reconvenes in January. The state Senate Election Law and Internal Affairs Committee approved an amendment to a retained bill, which passed the House of Representatives in the last session, and would tighten the legal definitions of “resident, inhabitant and residence or residency.” The move is expected to pit Senate Democrats who consider the bill an infringement on voting rights against Republicans who claim it eliminates the legal gray area surrounding domiciled citizens.
When the Senate reconvenes it is expected to take up HB 372, which would eliminate the language, “for the indefinite future,” in the law. The Senate Election Law and Internal Affairs Committee passed an amendment 3-2 along party lines, which further tightens the residency requirement by mainly altering RSA-21:6-a to read, “This place of abode or domicile must be that place the person has, through all of his or her actions, demonstrated a current intent to designate as his or her principal place of physical presence to the exclusion of all others.”
“This bill attempts to readdress what each term, inhabitant, resident and domicile means separately. The last time I asked there are 146 instances where each term is used separately in laws and they are used very interchangeably,” said state Sen. Andy Sanborn, R-Bedford, a member of the Election Law and Internal Affairs Committee. “The Legislature itself has made this issue more complicated, so we’re attempting to rein it back in to an understandable presence.”
Full Article: Fight looming in NH Senate over voting rights.