Foxboro Town Clerk Robert Cutler grimaces when asked about same-day voter registration. “We’d definitely need an updated computer system,” Cutler says, “and the state hasn’t gotten that ready yet.” Same-day voter registration — citizens not yet signed up to vote being able to walk in to a polling place on Election Day and cast a ballot — is a possibility in Attleboro area communities as a result of a lawsuit by the Massachusetts chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union. The ACLU claims that the 20-day deadline to register before the election is unconstitutional and unnecessary in these days of vastly improved technology.
A trial was held earlier this month, and a decision is expected soon from Suffolk Superior Court Judge Douglas Wilkins. Local election officials are keeping a close eye on the suit.
They say they want to encourage more people to go to the polls while avoiding voter fraud. “Nobody wants that,” Cutler says.
“We need time to get our voter list ready,” says Mansfield Town Clerk Marianne Staples, about the documentation which is checked on Election Day to make sure a citizen is registered. “Obviously, that takes time. However, I understand the frustrations of people when they come to the polls and can’t vote ..