Common Cause/NY Executive Director Susan Lerner said her group is supporting the agenda of the Stand for Freedom Coalition to remove what the groups consider barriers to voting. The coalition, which includes the NAACP and other groups, are planning a rally in New York City Dec. 10.
Common Cause wants to expand authorization to vote by absentee ballot, allow voters to cast their ballots before Election Day and eliminate requirements for showing driver’s licenses in order to vote, Lerner said in a statement today, which is Election Day.
“It is an outright disgrace that more than two-thirds of state legislatures across the nation are on the verge of taking a huge step backwards with respect to inclusivity and the basic right to vote,” she said. “Restrictive voter identification laws, the exclusion of ex-felons from voting, and the refusal to increase access at the polls by passing such straightforward laws as early voting and No-excuse absentee voting undermines our core democratic principles.”
Common Cause said New York should:
— Amend the state constitution to allow “no excuse” absentee voting, meaning people would not be required to check off why they can’t vote in person.
— Pass legislation that would permit voters to cast their ballots at the county board of elections or an another location 14 days before a general election, primary or special election.
— Eliminate driver’s licenses as a pre-requisite to vote. The practices disenfranchises the elderly, students and low-income individuals, according to Common Cause.