Report: 187,000 Illinois residents have registered to vote though new system

Report: 187,000 Illinois residents have registered to vote though new system
The system went into effect on July 1, 2018 under a state law approved last year. (Source: Chris Drury, KFVS)

CARBONDALE, IL (KFVS) - A new state report states that nearly 187,000 Illinois residents have registered to vote through the state’s new automatic voter registration system.

The system went into effect on July 1, 2018 under a state law approved last year.

A report from the state Board of Elections says about 186,800 people registered to vote between July and Nov. 26 using the system. It requires people to be automatically registered to vote when they apply for or renew a driver’s license or interact with certain state agencies.

SIU Visiting Professor of Political Science John Jackson said that programs like this are a positive for the state of Illinois, and that helping people to register to vote can also lead to higher voter turn out.

Jackson spoke how numbers like these can change election results.

“The election in Florida, which decided the 2000 election, Bush got fewer popular votes than Al Gore but won the electoral college, that was decided ultimately by 537 votes in a state as big as Florida,” he said.

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