Following Through on the Promise to Shorten Election Lines
Posted at 12:45 p.m. on Nov. 8, 2012
Rick Hasen proposes a way for President Obama to quickly make good on his promise to address the problem of incredibly long lines to vote on Election Day and even during early voting in some places, noting that “This is something that must be done in the off-season.”
“I am thinking that a bipartisan commission should be convened to make recommendations, including draft legislation, to be presented to the president and Congress. It should have credible Democrats and Republicans, but beginning with those who acknowledge that long lines are a problem…local and state election administrators; legal, political, and public policy experts; and political people who could actually get something through Congress.”
“The scope of the Commission would be narrower than Carter-Ford or Carter-Baker: the mission would be to deal with the long line problem. But dealing with the long line problem might take the commission into broader proposals, such as carrots or sticks to get states to adopt early voting or extensive mail-in balloting campaigns, centralization of election databases, requirements for shorter federal ballots if a state like Florida decides it needs to produce a very lengthy ballot containing every word of measures virtually no one would read.”
Brad Plumer has five proposals that could be part of a reform effort.