The General Assembly passed legislation Tuesday that would allow Tennesseans to register to vote online. The House unanimously passed a bill that the Senate had earlier approved. The measure allows Tennesseans to go online to register to vote or update their registration records. Applicants would be directed to apply on paper if their name, date of birth or other identifying information could not be confirmed with the Department of Safety. Rep. Gerald McCormick, R-Chattanooga, who sponsored the House bill, said there would be safeguards to discourage voter fraud.
The move toward online voter registration is part of a growing national trend backed by bipartisan support that began after Arizona first implemented its own system in 2002.
As of April 6, a total of 31 states plus the District of Columbia offer online voter registration, according to a report by the National Conference of State Legislatures. And five states within a year, including Tennessee, have moved to allow the web-based registration, said Wendy Underhill, program director for Elections and Redistricting at the group.