While states across the country make it harder to vote—Alabama, which requires a government ID to vote, recently stopped issuing new licenses in every single county where black voters make up more than 75% of the voting population—one state just bucked the trend with a measure to make voter registration automatic.
On Saturday, California Gov. Jerry Brown signed legislation to register eligible voters when they get their driver's license. Sixteen other states and Congress have introduced automatic voter registration bills, but Oregon and California are the only states to have adopted this very obvious approach to simplifying the process and encouraging turnout.
“There will be a huge influx of new voters [as a result of automatic registration], and that’s good for our democracy,” California Secretary of State Alex Padilla told the New York Times. “We want to serve as a contrast to what we see happening in other states, where they are making it more difficult to register or actually cast a ballot. I think that’s flat out un-American, and we can show a different, better way with the automatic registration system.”