On Sept. 26, the Office of the Minnesota Secretary of State launched an online voter registration tool that was developed and driven by the goal to deliver a safe, secure and less expensive method for voters to register to vote. I am proud of the positive response the system has generated, underscored by more than 1,500 applications submitted since the roll-out — demonstrating the enthusiasm and action of Minnesotans when it comes to participating in our democracy. Every election year, Minnesota leads the nation in voter turnout. This is something we can take great pride in. Our voters deserve to have the tools to make the registration and Election Day process more efficient, and I strive to support the citizens by providing secure online tools that Minnesotans expect and appreciate in today’s technology-driven age.
Online voter registration was the next logical step in modernizing our voter-outreach efforts. This system mirrors the functionality and requirements of a series of other innovative online applications we’ve introduced in recent years that help voters find their polling place, look up registration or absentee ballot status, view a sample ballot and request an absentee ballot if in the military or working overseas.
Every time we’ve introduced an online service, voters have embraced it. It’s clear that online voter registration will continue this trend based on the common sense and convenience of the tool.
Just as important as making registration more convenient for voters, online voter registration delivers a great taxpayer benefit. In Arizona, where online voter registration has been used for more than a decade, officials have reported costs going from 83 cents to 3 cents per registration. In a big election year in Minnesota, when more than 800,000 registrations are processed, online registration will result in huge savings to county governments.