House Bill 39 would essentially eliminate the deadline to register to vote, which is currently the fourth Saturday before an election. Instead, Delawareans could apply to register to vote at a polling place on election day and then cast their ballots. The voter would have to present documents such as photo identification or a copy of a recent utility bill, bank statement, check or another government form or paper to election officials at the polling place when filing out the application.
This bill would apply to presidential primary elections, state primary elections, special elections and general elections. The one thing that this bill does not apply to is changing your party registration at the polling place on the day of the party primary election. So let’s say you are a Republican who has finally seen the light and no longer wants to be part of evil, and they want to change their party registration to Democratic and vote in the Democratic primary in April 2020. Well, they will not be able to do that, since the law will still require you to change your registration three months before the primary election.
I do think that should change too, but I am not for an open primary. I would change the party registration deadline so that it is closer, like one week before the election. But if you are going to vote in a party’s primary, I think there needs to be some kind of effort on your part to become a member of that party. I know independents and unaffliateds are not happy with this because they want the right to remain independent and unaffliated along with the privilege to vote in a party primary. My thought is that if you want to change the party from within (i.e. helping chose better and/or different candidates) then you should be at least a member of that party, even if for a brief week when you hel. Call me stubborn, I don’t care.
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, 18 states let residents register and vote on election day.
Where is the bill now? House Administration 1/16/19
Democratic Sponsors: Viola, Walsh, Dorsey Walker, Paradee, Sokola, Townsend, Baumbach, Bentz, Bolden, Bush, Chukwuocha, Cooke, Griffith, Heffernan, Kowalko, Longhurst, Lynn, Mitchell, Osienski, Schwartzkopf, Seigfried, K.Williams