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Iowa: proponents tout Election Day Registration

The Council Bluffs Daily Nonpareil reports: It's like grabbing hold of someone's hand who is reaching out to become part of the Democratic process.

That's how one advocate described a new voting method the Iowa Legislature is discussing - the ability to register on Election Day.

"Our goal is to increase participation and reduce the barriers to participate," said Stuart Comstock-Gay, democracy program director for Demos, a nonpartisan public policy research and advocacy organization. "Election Day registration is in place in seven states, and those states that have it tend to get 10 percent to 12 percent higher turnout."

"Somebody who is not registered can go to the polling place on Election Day and register right there," said Betty Ahrens, executive director of the Iowa Citizen Action Network.

The voting registration deadline in Iowa is 10 days prior to an election. A lot of people, especially those who recently moved from other locations, apparently don't know that, according to Pottawattamie County Auditor Marilyn Jo Drake. -- SW Iowa News - Election Day registration has backers

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