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N.Y. AG: Online Voter Registration Is Legal

Mary Altaffer

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman says he believes online voter registration is allowed under state election law. The opinion is in response to a request for guidance from Suffolk County.

The question posed by Suffolk in February was whether an “electronic signature” can be considered binding under state law. 

Schneiderman’s office issued an opinion stating that an electronic signature of the same quality and likeness to an ink signature is acceptable. He says online registration will help reduce the barriers to voting in New York.

“In New York, we make it too hard for people to register and too hard for people to vote, and that is something that I’m very much committed to changing.”

However, third party groups that register voters will still have to print out the completed registration and present hard copies to the Board of Elections. Schneiderman says he is encouraging civic and technology groups to develop a completely online registration system.