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New State Voting Law Could Boost Turnout

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Sacramento, CA – The newly passed voting law allows California voters to switch their party affiliation and update their address at polling stations on election day – just in time for the March primary.

The bill was signed into law on Thursday by Governor Gavin Newsom and takes effect immediately. The state’s 5.6 million independent voters can now register with a party by signing off on only one form on election day.

It is the hope of Democratic presidential campaigns that the law will boost the number of registered Democrats and participation in their primary. This is also the first-time residents can register to vote at polling stations on election day. Lawmakers from both parties agree the new rule will cut down on long lines as those already registered to vote can bypass registration lines if they only need to update their party affiliation or residency.

As reported here last month, independent or no party preference voters need not register as a Democrat to vote in the Democratic presidential primary, as reported here. No party preference voters make up 28% of California’s registered voters.