New Technology to Help Voters Check Status
October 20, 2011 | WMFE - The Florida League of Women Voters is teaming up with Microsoft to offer a new way to check voter registration status. The new technology allows citizens to scan a special bar code with any smart phone and be automatically connected to their county Supervisor of Elections office.
Deirdre Mcnab is president of the League of Women Voters of Florida. She said voters can easily check on their current registration status.
“They can check that their address is up to date. They can check if their name is correct.” Mcnab said. “If they want change parties, if they want to request a vote by mail ballot. They’ll be directly connected to their county Supervisor of Elections office.”
Mcnab says the new technology is helpful but doesn’t address other voting changes instituted by state lawmakers.
“It does not address the cutting in half of early voting days.” Mcnab said. “It does not address taking away the most popular early voting day, the Sunday before the election and it does not address the drastic cutbacks in the ability of groups like ours to register new, eligible voters.”
The League of Women Voters and other groups have filed lawsuits challenging parts of the new laws. The league says some of the provisions they violate the federal Voting Rights Act.
But Mcnab says the partnership with Microsoft is a positive step. The new bar code tabs will soon begin appearing on posters, magazines and newspapers.
Mcnab says she realizes that many voters don’t have smart phones to read the bar codes but League volunteers do and they will assist people who want to check their registration status.
Florida is the first state to have the new technology but Microsoft intends to roll it out gradually across the country.