SOS: 2K registered to vote in Michigan in last 2 weeks

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    More than 2,000 Michiganders took advantage of a 2018 constitutional amendment expanding voting rights, according to preliminary data from the Michigan Secretary of State office. One of the aspects of Proposal 3 is that citizens are allowed to register to vote up to Election Day.

    Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson announces details of Michigan’s new Independent Citizen’s Redistricting Commission on Oct. 24, 2019 | Claire Moore

    Citizens could previously register up until 30 days prior to an election. In the 14 days prior to the Tuesday election, more than 2,000 Michiganders registered to vote, 1,000 of which registered the day of the election.

    The new rules benefit young people, according to the Secretary of State. One-third of those who registered on Election Day were between the ages of 18 and 21. Half of those who registered to vote on Election Day were 30 years old or younger and it was the same for those who registered within 14 days of the election.

    Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson last month testified before the state Senate Elections Committee about the benefits of the changes in voting laws. She said in the May election, 568 people registered in the 14-day period and 700 people registered in that window for the August election.

    “I am excited to see such great new participation in our democracy,” Benson said in a statement. “My office will continue to work with our Bureau of Elections and clerks across the state to ensure voters are educated on and able to take advantage of their new rights.”

    Anna Liz Nichols
    Anna Liz Nichols covers criminal justice, the environment and the Legislature. She has reported for several publications, including MLive and Michigan State University’s award-winning student paper, the State News, where she covered the many tendrils of the Larry Nassar sexual abuse scandal. She is finishing up a degree in journalism and environmental studies at Michigan State University, graduating May 2020.