April , 2019

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SPRINGFIELD, IL – Illinois State Senator Jacqueline Y. Collins (D-Chicago 16th) condemned the governor’s decision to veto legislation that would have established automatic voter registration in Illinois, bypassing arcane and unnecessary registration rules to engage more citizens, especially youth.

“Democracy can’t wait on the governor to become comfortable with an idea that has already taken root in five states and would protect our most fundamental freedom – one for which our foremothers and forefathers bled and died,” Collins said. “As a Black woman hopeful for the next generation of active citizens, I am deeply troubled that our state ranks 23rd nationally in the percentage of eligible voters who are registered. Automatic voter registration would improve access to the polls and civic participation – a goal toward which every elected official should strive.”

More than two million Illinoisans are eligible to vote but cannot because they aren’t registered. Young people between the ages of 18 and 24 are least likely to be on the voter rolls. Moving accounts for one-third of the gap; one in nine Americans move each year, and those who change addresses often are not aware that they must reregister at the new address in order to vote in subsequent elections.

The automatic voter registration plan (Senate Bill 250), which passed both legislative chambers with bipartisan support, would have streamlined access while improving security. It would have required government agencies – including Driver Services facilities and human services offices – to forward information provided to them by eligible residents to the Board of Elections to add to the voter rolls or update existing registrations. An eligible voter could still opt out of being registered. The legislation the governor vetoed today actually contains stricter safeguards than the current law to prevent fraud and require the rolls to be regularly updated and checked for accuracy.

“Recent federal court rulings in Wisconsin, Texas and elsewhere have reinforced that voting restrictions – such as ‘voter ID laws’ – that disproportionately block access to the polls by minorities, seniors and young people are unconstitutional, no matter how hard their proponents try to disguise them as fraud prevention tactics,” Collins said. “Here in Illinois, members of both parties are endeavoring to forge a different path, one that empowers all who are entitled to vote, and I am greatly disappointed that Governor Rauner has decided to stand in the way.”

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Welcome to CopyLine Magazine! The first issue of CopyLine Magazine was published in November, 1990, by Editor & Publisher Juanita Bratcher. CopyLine’s main focus is on the political arena – to inform our readers and analyze many of the pressing issues of the day - controversial or otherwise. Our objectives are clear – to keep you abreast of political happenings and maneuvering in the political arena, by reporting and providing provocative commentaries on various issues. For more about CopyLine Magazine, CopyLine Blog, and CopyLine Television/Video, please visit juanitabratcher.com, copylinemagazine.com, and oneononetelevision.com. Bratcher has been a News/Reporter, Author, Publisher, and Journalist for 33 years. She is the author of six books, including “Harold: The Making of a Big City Mayor” (Harold Washington), Chicago’s first African-American mayor; and “Beyond the Boardroom: Empowering a New Generation of Leaders,” about John Herman Stroger, Jr., the first African-American elected President of the Cook County Board. Bratcher is also a Poet/Songwriter, with 17 records – produced by HillTop Records of Hollywood, California. Juanita Bratcher Publisher

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