The Senate passed legislation today that would allow residents aged 18 years and older to register to vote online until 30 days before the election by a 49-0 vote. The measure, sponsored by Sen. Lloyd Smucker, R-Lancaster County, now goes to the House for consideration. It is expected to result in significant cost savings being realized as was the case in other states that have made this move. Government reform groups also suggest the online registration will improve the accuracy of registrations and official voter rolls as well as eliminate the chance of anyone intercepting or failing to turn in registration forms to county officials.
“The idea is to make it easier to register to vote and to increase participation in voting,” Smucker said in a news release. “This will also modernize the registration process and cut costs for counties. It’s been proven to work in other states, and the time is right for Pennsylvania to join them.”
The Department of State had begun to prepare to move to online voter registrations last year but its attention was diverted to implementing the state’s voter ID law.