SACRAMENTO – Legislation designed to reform California’s current antiquated voting process for military service members who are currently deployed overseas passed unanimously out of the Assembly Elections and Redistricting Committee today. AB 1929, authored by Assemblyman Jeff Gorell (R-Camarillo), seeks to bring California into the 21st century and utilize technology to improve a system that regularly results in lost or late ballots and military votes arriving in county elections offices too late to be counted.
“It’s time for elections to take a quantum leap into the computer age to solve this voting problem,” stated Gorell. “Our men and women in uniform are risking their lives overseas to protect our constitutional rights and freedoms. We must protect their right to participate in the democracy that they give everything to defend.”
AB 1929 makes our voting process more efficient and accurate by allowing the Secretary of State to utilize current technology that is reliable, safe, and fast. Under the bill, ballots would be transmitted via email to eligible voters overseas for them to complete and mail back.
According to the Federal Voting Assistance Program, almost half (49.1%) of all voting failure incidences are due to ballots never being received by the military, usually because they are lost or delayed in the outbound mail.
California is one of the states that received Federal funds in order to update and implement voting processes to help our overseas military vote in our elections. Currently, 17 states have already implemented an online system and 14 other states are currently in the process of implementing their own program. There have been no reported problems in the states that have already use an online program.