Articles about voting issues in Delaware.

Delaware: Legislation seeks to prevent political meddling in drawing districts for the General Assembly | Sun Times

A plan to change how the state sets the borders for legislative districts has attracted bipartisan support in the upper chamber of the General Assembly. Senate Bill 27 seeks to overhaul General Assembly redistricting by taking it out of the hands of the legislature, sponsor Sen. Bryan Townsend said. Instead, an independent commission would redraw voting maps without reference to politics. The Democrat of Newark said the idea is to create an unbiased and transparent method of setting boundaries. The legislation proposes a nine-member nonpartisan commission. Read More

Delaware: Bills would move local primaries; allow for early voting | The News Journal

Delawareans would be able to vote early, would be automatically registered to vote at the DMV, and would vote in local primary elections and presidential primary at the same time if a trio of bills passes the General Assembly. The goal of all three proposals is to encourage more people to vote, the sponsors say. Rep. David Bentz, D-Christiana, sponsored a bill that would allow citizens to vote in the 10 days leading up to any general, primary or special election. There would be one early-voting polling place in each county, plus one in Wilmington. “We should try to make it so that our elections fit into the people’s schedules, and not where people should have to fit their schedule into the government’s,” Bentz said. Read More

Delaware: An effort to take politics out of redistricting in Delaware | The News Journal

The General Assembly is only a few steps away from handing over the job of drawing legislative districts to an independent commission. Supporters, mostly Democrats, say the change would prevent politicians from holding onto power by manipulating the redistricting process. “Voters should choose their elected officials; elected officials shouldn’t choose their voters,” said Sen. Bryan Townsend, D-Newark, who sponsored legislation to create the commission. Townsend’s bill passed the Senate on a 12-7 vote Wednesday. It still needs to pass a House committee, then the full House, before going to Gov. John Carney’s desk. Read More

Delaware: Senate OKs bill creating commission to draw new legislative districts | Delaware State News | Delaware State News

The Senate on Wednesday approved a bill ordering independent redistricting of the state’s legislative districts. The proposal received 12 votes in support and seven against, with one member not voting and one absent.The measure now goes to the House. Senate Bill 27 would create an independent nine-member commission to redraw legislative district lines every 10 years. The process is currently overseen by the General Assembly, which critics say can lead to gerrymandering. The commission would give at least three political parties representation and allow members of the public to serve. Applicants would initially be selected by a panel of judges, with the secretary of state then randomly choosing nine names. Read More

Delaware: Early voting bill hits Legislative Hall | Delaware First Media

The bill from Rep. David Bentz (D-Christiana) would require the Department of Elections to allow voters to cast ballots for at least 10 days prior to any election – including local races. At least one polling place would be open for eight hours in all three counties and Wilmington Bentz says access to the ballot should be as open as possible for all eligible citizens. “It just makes it easy as possible for people to get to the polls on their own time that fits their schedule – their busy schedule. The culture is one that’s more on demand,” he said. Read More

Delaware: Bill would ease restrictions on absentee ballots in Delaware | Delaware First Media

A Delaware lawmaker introduced a bill this week that would make it easier to vote by mail. Representative Earl Jaques (D -Glasgow) wants to remove language in the state constitution that requires voters show a valid excuse for obtaining an absentee ballot. And that’s going to be an uphill battle. Since its a constitution change, he needs approval from 2/3 of the General Assembly in two consecutive two-year sessions, which means he needs Republican votes. And that could be a tall order. Republicans blocked Jaques’ last attempt to do the same thing in 2015, saying it would increase voter fraud. Read More

Delaware: Department of Elections pursues voting machine modernization | Delaware State News | Delaware State News

On Thursday morning, the Kent County Department of Elections completed its inspection of all 32 voting machines that will be used in the upcoming Kent County Levy Court special election. … In addition to routine inspection, the department recently has been pursuing modernization of voting equipment. Last year, state election commissioner Elaine Manlove requested a task force to review existing equipment (House Bill 342). On Tuesday the resulting task force met for the first time to discuss a strategy. Read More

Delaware: Officials balk at ‘rigged’ election claims | Delaware Online

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump has repeatedly raised the specter of a “rigged election,” and it appears he is not alone. A recent poll by the University of Delaware found that residents are concerned about the integrity of the voting process: 66 percent of the 900 respondents said they were either somewhat or very concerned about voter fraud; 61 percent are worried about the election “being rigged,” and 75 percent are worried about hackers breaking into the computers of state election systems. “If Americans don’t trust our electoral process, where are we?” said State Elections Commissioner Elaine Manlove. “I don’t like to see people in positions of authority saying these things that undermine what we’re trying to do.” She and other state election officials maintain there are numerous safeguards are in place. Read More

Delaware: Elections tab totals $3 million | Delaware Online

Whether large or small, contentious or quiet, Delaware taxpayers are on the hook for millions each time votes need to be cast across the state. Among other points on the balance sheet, election employees have to be paid, machines need to be shipped and polling stations booked, all at a cost that falls around the $3 million mark for statewide elections. Election officials say running the whole show from the state level helps streamline the process, but it’s never easy or cheap. This year had a presidential primary in April, a statewide primary on Sept. 13 and the general election in November, plus other local contests. Read More

Delaware: Law restores voting rights for ex-offenders | NewsWorks

A few Wilmington residents will head to the polls for the first time to vote thanks to a new state law restoring voting rights to ex-offenders. Though the new law made headlines in July when it was signed by Gov. Jack Markell, a local man is on a mission to make sure people are aware of it. His name is Vash Turner, and so far he has registered at least 400 ex-offenders since last month. “Sometimes they get out, they lose fight because they feel as though they’re not a part of society anymore,” Turner said. Throughout the years, state leaders have taken several steps to help ex-offenders feel like they are a part of society. Years ago, ex-offenders were allowed to vote after a five year waiting period and settling court fees. Read More