Automatic voter registration takes hold on West Coast


SALEM, Ore. (AP) — In the first six days of this year, more than 4,300 people registered to vote in Oregon under a new initiative that automatically signs up voters when they apply for driver’s licenses.

Oregon is the first state to adopt the idea that it is the government’s responsibility to register voters, not their own — a move that could grow the number of registered voters by 13 percent by the November election.

California has approved similar legislation, and automatic registration bills have been introduced in more than a dozen other states, though it remains to be seen whether the idea will take hold beyond two West Coast states dominated by Democrats or whether the newly registered will decide to participate.

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