Reports say the state is having problems with voter registration at Motor Vehicle Department offices around the state. The state is required, by federal law “to provide individuals with the opportunity to register to vote at the same time that they apply for a driver’s license or seek to renew a driver’s license, and requires the State to forward the completed application to the appropriate state of local election official.” Oriana Sandoval, the policy director of the Center for Civic Policy*, told KOAT that she was unable to register to vote at an MVD office recently when she went to renew her driver’s license. Sandoval told Action 7 News last week she tried to renew her voter registration at a downtown MVD. Rather than having it done simultaneously with the license renewal, she was handed a piece of paper with directions on how to sign up to vote online, on a home or work computer. “I would’ve used a kiosk at the MVD, but there wasn’t one available at the downtown office,” Sandoval said.
Secretary of State Dianna Duran announced earlier this year that online voting registration would be available at MVD offices.
In 2010, New Mexico settled a lawsuit over MVD offices not providing voter registration; New Mexico’s numbers lagged behind other states in voter registrations through MVD.
This was supposed to replace the old system where those registering for new licenses would get paper voting forms to fill out that would then be sent to the Secretary of State’s office.