Several sources tell NBC 5 that Gov. Bruce Rauner had planned to sign the new Automatic Voter Registration bill last week during the Rainbow PUSH Coalition Convention, but at the last minute the event was cancelled. The bill allows voters to automatically be registered to vote through an electronic process when applying for a driver’s license or state ID, unless they opt out. Repeated questions to the governor’s communications team have not been answered, but those who support the bill expect him to sign it.
Articles about voting issues in Illinois.
Illinois: State lawmaker concerned about proposed tweak to nursing home voter registration | Illinois News Network
A state representative has some questions about a proposed change to Illinois election law that would allow for more grace-period voter registration at nursing homes. Senate Bill 1479 passed both chambers in May and was sent to the governor last month. It would enhance grace-period voter registration and changes of address for eligible residents at nursing homes. State Rep. Jeanne Ives, R-Wheaton, was the only lawmaker in the House to raise questions before it passed in May. “You can easily have [nursing home residents] double registered and anytime you have somebody double registered you have the propensity for possible fraud to occur,” Ives said. “They should have the same voting rights as everybody else, but they should have no more voting rights than anybody else either.”
Illinois will not hand over voter roll data as requested by a Trump administration panel, the Board of Elections announced on Thursday, saying that it does not have a publicly available roll. After Trump’s newly created Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity issued a letter asking that states provide voter data—including names, addresses, birth dates, the last four digits of Social Security numbers and voting history, stretching back ten years—the Illinois office was met with an influx of calls urging the Board to deny the request. Kenneth Menzel, General Counsel of the State Board of Elections, wrote in a letter to Kris Kobach, Vice Chair of the PACEI, that the Commission’s stated intention to make public any submitted data prevents the Board from turning it over, per the state’s election-code safeguards.
Amid the array of investigations into Russian interference with the 2016 election, the director of the Illinois State Board of Elections testified last week before the Senate Intelligence Committee. Illinois was the target of a hack that exposed thousands of voters’ names, addresses, birthdays and partial social security numbers. Since the attack was detected, officials have moved to strengthen security around the voter database. But nationwide, concerns about election cybersecurity are on the rise – especially since Illinois was one of at least 21 states that were successfully hacked.
Automatic voter registration has been a topic in Illinois for months, and it’s something that U.S. Senator Dick Durbin is also working on at a national level. Both the Illinois House and Senate unanimously passed legislation for automatic voter registration. That currently sits on the governor’s desk and has signaled that he will sign.
Backers of the new Automatic Voter Registration bill approved by the General Assembly said they cannot wait to see Governor Rauner sign the legislation, and put it into action. Backers believe it will expand voter participation in Illinois. WBBM’s Political Editor Craig Dellimore reports. A spokeswoman for Governor Rauner said he thanks the sponsors and stakeholders who work with his office to craft the final version of this law. Anyone who applies for or updates a driver’s license will automatically be registered to vote unless they say otherwise.
Democratic U.S. Rep. Mike Quigley said Monday that Russian operatives hacked into the State Board of Elections last year to view voter database files, a potential move toward trying to make voters distrust the state and federal election system. Quigley, a member of the House Intelligence Committee, also warned of a potential “constitutional crisis” over executive privilege between President Donald Trump and the U.S. Supreme Court as part of multiple investigations into possible collusion between agents of the Russian government and Trump’s presidential campaign. Quigley’s declaration of Russian involvement in the hacking of the state elections board marked the first time the country had been definitively identified as behind the attack last year, though it had been widely suspected.
Voter rolls soon may be growing, but that doesn’t mean more people are going to vote. The Illinois House voted 115-0 this week to approve automatic voter registration for citizens who use state services, such as the driver facilities at the Secretary of State’s offices. It changes registration from “opt-in” to “opt-out.” On Wednesday, the Senate passed the bill 55-0. “The new system assumes they want in,” said David Druker, press secretary for the Secretary of State’s Office, of voters.
Local election officials hope the state will budget enough money to do automatic voter registration properly. “Have they figured out how they’re going to pay for it and implement it? That will be key for its success,” said McLean County Clerk Kathy Michael. “It would be a good thing if it worked perfectly, but we’re awaiting further details on it.” The state House and Senate sent Gov. Bruce Rauner legislation that would automatically add residents to the voter rolls when they visit state offices, including those of the secretary of state, who oversees driver’s licenses and vehicle registration. Residents would be able to opt out at the beginning of the registration process. … Logan County Clerk Sally Turner, however, said, “Most county clerks have resigned to the fact that (automatic voter registration) will be the law, but we are all apprehensive in the way it will occur.”
Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) intends to sign legislation supported by both chambers of the Illinois legislature that will automatically register people to vote when they interact with state drivers’ facilities and other state agencies. The decision to sign the legislation marks a big victory for voting rights advocates. Rauner vetoed a similar measure last year. At the time, he said the legislation would “inadvertently open the door to voter fraud and run afoul of federal election law.” But a few changes were apparently enough to convince Rauner to sign on to automatic voter registration, which has already led to considerable gains in the number of registered voters in Oregon, the first state to implement it last year. Illinois would be the ninth state to adopt automatic voter registration, and advocates estimate it could add over 1 million voters to the state’s rolls.