AUGUSTA, Maine—Members of the coalition hoping to restore same-day voter registration in Maine released information early Tuesday detailing legislators who voted to eliminate same-day registration but registered to vote on or near Election Day themselves.[...]
The names of legislators released includes three state senators—including Senate President Kevin Raye of Perry, a co-sponsor of the bill that eliminated same-day registration — and seven members of the House of Representatives.
Same-day voter registration was eliminated with the passage of LD 1376 in June. Both votes in the House and Senate fell sharply along party lines. Since the bill’s passage, Protect Maine Votes has gathered the necessary signatures to force a statewide people’s veto.[...]
In addition to numerous members of the House and Senate whose registration would not have been allowed under current law, Gov. Paul LePage, who signed the bill eliminating same-day registration, registered to vote in Waterville on the day before Election Day in 1982.
Several members of LePage's senior staff also registered on or near Election Day, including his press secretary and legislative policy coordinator.
How much more Republican can you get? They used the law to their advantage, but killed it for everyone else. Protect Maine Votes compiled and released this information, because, as communications director David Farmer says, "One of the primary arguments made for the repeal of same-day registration is that people who register late don't care, are lazy or are ill-informed." By pointing out the number of state leaders who used the law themselves, they hope to poke a big hole in that argument.
The organization has gathered enough signatures to put an initiative to restore same-day registration on this November's statewide ballot, if the legislature doesn't overturn it in this special session.