Voter registration; proof of citizenship required to register to vote in certain elections. (HB1598)

Introduced By

Del. Mark Cole (R-Fredericksburg) with support from co-patrons Del. Matt Fariss (R-Rustburg), and Sen. Richard Stuart (R-Westmoreland)

Progress

Introduced
Passed Committee
Passed House
Passed Senate
Signed by Governor
Became Law

Description

Voter registration; proof of citizenship required to register to vote in certain elections. Requires persons applying to register to vote to provide proof of United States citizenship. An applicant who does not provide such proof of citizenship shall be registered to vote in federal elections only. An applicant who does provide such proof of citizenship shall be registered to vote in federal, state, and local elections. The bill provides that any person who is registered in the Commonwealth on January 1, 2018, will be deemed to have provided proof of citizenship. The bill directs the general registrars to indicate on each registered voter's registration record whether such voter is registered to vote in federal, state, and local elections or in federal elections only. Amends § 24.2-404, § 24.2-417, § 24.2-418, of the Code of Virginia. Read the Bill »

Status

02/14/2017: passed committee

History

  • 01/03/2017 Committee
  • 01/03/2017 Prefiled and ordered printed; offered 01/11/17 17100743D
  • 01/03/2017 Referred to Committee on Privileges and Elections
  • 01/10/2017 Assigned P & E sub: Elections
  • 01/23/2017 Impact statement from DPB (HB1598)
  • 01/24/2017 Subcommittee recommends reporting (5-Y 2-N)
  • 01/27/2017 Reported from Privileges and Elections (15-Y 7-N) (see vote tally)
  • 01/30/2017 Read first time
  • 01/31/2017 Read second time and engrossed
  • 02/01/2017 Read third time and passed House (64-Y 33-N)
  • 02/01/2017 VOTE: PASSAGE (64-Y 33-N) (see vote tally)
  • 02/02/2017 Constitutional reading dispensed
  • 02/02/2017 Referred to Committee on Privileges and Elections
  • 02/14/2017 Reported from Privileges and Elections (8-Y 6-N) (see vote tally)
  • 02/16/2017 Constitutional reading dispensed (39-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
  • 02/17/2017 Read third time
  • 02/17/2017 Passed by for the day

Video

This bill was discussed on the floor of the General Assembly. Below is all of the video that we have of that discussion, 2 clips in all, totaling 5 minutes.

Transcript

This is a transcript of the video clips in which this bill is discussed.

READING UNCONTESTED. HOUSE BILL 1475 REQUESTED TO BE TAKEN BYE FOR THE DAY BY DELEGATE SIMON. TURNING TO PAGE 11, SAME CATEGORY. HOUSE BILL 1542, PATRONED BY DELEGATE KILGORE, REQUESTED TAKEN BYE FOR THE DAY AND HOUSE BILL 1973 HAS BEEN ASKED TAKEN BYE FOR THE DAY. TURNING TO HOUSE BILL SECOND READING REGULAR, PAGE 21 THE HOUSE BILL 1852 REQUESTED TO TAKE THAT BYE FOR THE DAY. CONTINUING TO PAGE 26, SAME GAT CORY. PAGE 27, PAGE 2351 BYE FOR THE DAY AND DELEGATE HERETICK'S BILL TAKEN BYE FOR THE DAY BY HIMSELF. HOUSE BILL 2053 HAS BEEN ASKED TAKEN BY FOR THE DAY. MR. GILLINGERT? THANK YOU, MR. SPEAKER, I MOVE THOSE BILLS GO BYE FOR THE DAY.

Del. Bill Howell (R-Fredericksburg): WITHOUT OBJECTION, BYE FOR THE DAY.

[Unknown]: AND PURSE UNITE TO HOUSE RULE 30 JOURNAL SHALL REFLECT FOLLOWING MEMBERS ARE AWAY ON PRESSING PERSONAL BUSINESS. AND GRANTED LEAVE FROM TODAY'S SESSION, DELEGATES FERRIS AND MOOREFIELD. DOES THE CLERK HAVE ANNOUNCEMENTS? NOT AT THIS TIME MR. SPEAKER. CLERK WILL CALL CALENDAR. CALENDAR FOR U.S. HOUSE OF DELEGATES FOR TUESDAY, JANUARY 31, FIRST CATEGORY HOUSE BILLS ON THIRD READING TWO DOZEN BILLS IN THE BLOCK. PAGE ONE, HOUSE BILL 1405. PAGE TWO, HOUSE BILL 1453, EMERGENCY. 1494, 1497, 1741, 1750. PAGE FOUR, HOUSE BILL 1763, 1785. 1885, 1922 HOUSE BILLS 2075, 2161 EMERGENCY, 2162, EMERGENCY, 2164, EMERGENCY, 2165, AND 2229, HOUSE BILL 2277, AND HOUSE BILL 3457.

Del. Bill Howell (R-Fredericksburg): SHALL THE BILL PASS? CLERK WILL CLOSE THE ROLL.

[Unknown]: AYE, 97, NO, 0. BILLS ARE PASSED. CONTINUING WITH THE NEXT CATEGORY, HOUSE BILLS ON THIRD READING REGULAR. HOUSE BILL 2201 RELATING TO DRIVEING ON THE RIGHT SIDE OF

Comments

frank papcin writes:

why should anyone not a citizen be able to vote in our country in the first place?
proof of citizenship should be the law of the land, and I thought it was?
I'm up set that illegal aliens are ever allowed to remain free to room our country
or allowed to drive
has the word ' illegal ' lost it's meaning?
is this the united states of America -- or anybody for anything connected area of north America--- either we are a country with laws or we're not

Kevin Mullane writes:

This appears to address a problem that may not exist, while further inconveniencing the citizens of the Commonwealth. It promises to increase the cost of elections and adds needless bureaucratic friction to the process. It will likely further dampen citizen interest in voter participation. It is already against the law for non-citizens to attempt to cast a ballot.

ACLU-VA Voting Rights, tracking this bill in Photosynthesis, notes:

The ACLU of Virginia strongly opposes this bill. Because Virginia cannot legally impose this requirement in federal elections, this bill proposes to create a separate system for state and local elections with additional requirements. A two-tiered registration and voting system would be impossible to efficiently administer, cost the taxpayers untold amounts of money to implement, and create confusion and long lines at election time. This is an ill-considered proposal that seeks to put further barriers in the entrance to the voting booth without any reason, basis in fact or thought about the administrative and human costs. It is an effort to further suppress the vote in Virginia.

Tom writes:

Del Cole's true purpose is voter intimidation. We do not have a significant problem with non-citizens voting in the Commonwealth. But, this bill would create a real burden for many citizens wanting to register who do not readily have the required documents. Cole's intent is to keep people, many of them lower income, off the rolls. Consequences of the bill would be to require ELECT and local registrar's to maintain duplicate registration rolls at greater expense and risk of error and to create confusion/confrontation at the polls when a voter who is registered in one type of election shows up to vote in one for which he/she isn't registered.

Brad writes:

I oppose this bill. There is no reason to have two different sets of requirements in order to register for Federal versus local elections. Among new voters this will create substantial confusion regarding the documents required to prove citizenship, what elections a person has or has not been registered as a voter for, and whether the registration process has been completed in a timely manner. If passed, this bill has the potential of denying thousands of people the opportunity to vote because of delays in registration.

ACLU-VA Legislative Agenda, tracking this bill in Photosynthesis, notes:

The ACLU of Virginia strongly opposes this bill. Because Virginia cannot legally impose this requirement in federal elections, this bill proposes to create a separate system for state and local elections with additional requirements. A two-tiered registration and voting system would be impossible to efficiently administer, cost the taxpayers untold amounts of money to implement, and create confusion and long lines at election time. This is an ill-considered proposal that seeks to put further barriers in the entrance to the voting booth without any reason, basis in fact or thought about the administrative and human costs. It is an effort to further suppress the vote in Virginia.

JoAnne Norton writes:

I have served as election official for years and I have never had an undocumented immigrant try to vote. I know the new immigrants around my area. They are studying hard to become a citizen. This is voter suppression. You would have to search for another document to register to vote. This would be cumbersome and deter people from showing up to register. Also we have low voter turnout on state and local elections and we need to turn that around. This bill would make it worse.

We should look at our reasons to want voter suppression. What we need is better discussion of what our values are and why we vote between all parties.

William Fleming writes:

I have friends who are DOCUMENTED aliens from other countries who have never expressed any interest in voting for a local, state, or national election. This is purely intended to suppress the vote by creating additional barriers for citizens. Virginia has had a long and sordid history of voter suppression. This is yet more of the same. Disgraceful.

Sidney Newton writes:

This bill is mystifying to me. Delegate Cole wishes to set up a separate system of voting which would lead to endless challenges. How would this work? I go to the poll but forget my passport (imagine I moved recently so my registration record is recently changed) the registrar will only give me a federal ballot thus obstructing my vote. Do I appeal there? Do I just sue? Will all polls need lawyers to vet voters? It will cost the Commonwealth a lot of money. In addition, this is just meant to intimidate voters - Delegate Cole certainly must hope that voters who oppose him will not be able to vote him out in upcoming elections. I understand that Delegate Cole means to suppress votes, and that Delegate Cole is unconcerned with wasteful spending. What I don't understand is which vote he means to suppress. I have a passport ready to go! Do his supporters?

This should be opposed along with all dishonest manipulations designed to circumvent the will of the people: gerrymandering, poll taxes, gag orders on public information etc.

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