What you need to know about Proposition 3 and Michigan’s new voting laws

What you need to know about Michigan’s new voting laws.

The newly passed Proposition 3 will make big changes to Michigan’s voting laws.

Supporters, like Genesee County Clerk John Gleason, said it will make voting easier; especially for those with busy lives like working parents.

“It was a great day for democracy in Michigan,” Gleason said referring to the midterm elections.

He said straight party ticket voting will help communities, like Detroit.

“Now you get the straight party ticket voting. No long lines, especially in the urban areas,” he said.

Proposition three will also:

  • Allow you to register to vote and cast your ballot on the same day, including election day.
  • Adults are automatically registered to vote when they apply, renew or update their driver’s license or state identification card.
  • To vote absentee, you won’t have to explain why you can’t make it to the polls. That was previously limited to people 60 years and older, disabled or poll workers. If you didn’t belong to one of those groups, you would have to sign an affidavit explaining why you would be out of town and needed to vote absentee.

Gleason calls that an infringement on privacy.

“How about you go down to city hall and there’s a few people, or one person, who shouldn't hear that you’re going to be out of town,” he said. “That's nobody’s business that your house is going to be vacated for several months or the day of the election.”

Proposition 3 will also allow voters to see a post-election audit.

“Democracy is not supposed to put hurdles or obstacles in the way or participating,” Gleason said.

He hopes the changes will increase voter turnout.

Critics of the Prop 3 worry same-day registration will overwhelm local clerks on election day.

The proposal goes into effect in 2019.

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