Moffitt and Hammond switch automatic registration vote, concerned implementation is too quick

State of Illinois

Yesterday was the last scheduled veto session day for the 99th General Assembly.

Among the bills being considered this week was one that would allow automatic voter registration at some state agencies.

GOP Gov. Bruce Rauner vetoed it in August.

The Senate overrode the veto a few weeks ago, but Tuesday it fell four votes shy of the 71 needed in the House due to Republicans who supported the original bill refusing to override Rauner.

Among those were the two legislators that represent Galesburg, Don Moffitt and Norine Hammond.

Moffitt agrees with Rauner’s objections that the bill wouldn’t give County Clerk’s enough time to prepare for the change to be implemented Jan. 1, 2018.

“Obviously on this, you want to be sure it’s accurate and that adequate verification has taken place,” Moffitt says. “That isn’t stopping it but it’s saying let’s have a real implementation because it’s effecting county clerk’s.” 

Also, Moffitt echoed Rauner that which state agencies would qualify as a site for automatic voter registration were not strictly defined.

He says it’s not that some state agencies are “unreliable” but they might not all have the access to the same information and he would prefer “consistency” from the agencies who would implement the law.

Hammond says concern over voter-fraud that Rauner has backed are less of a concern for her. She’s more worried about the timeline, conflicts with federal law and the associated costs.

“I’m not certain that the Secretary of State’s office and all of the other agencies that would have provided this were prepared and if there was going to be enough money there,” Hammond says.

Hammond says that SB250 went “over and above” the federal law.

She’s a co-sponsor of HB6582, which she says is similar but federally compliant. However, she cautions that the bill may have to be brought back in January under another bill number.

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