Civic Nebraska — Rutgers University and the U.S. Elections Assistance Commission have released new findings that, among other things, show the power of vote-by-mail to close the participation gap among different segments of our population.
The National Vote at Home Institute (NVAHI), a non-partisan non-profit organization dedicated to providing better access to mailed-out ballots for American voters, fully supports New York’s recently passed early mail voting bill (S.7394/A.7632).
“Access to the ballot is fundamental to American democracy, and we urge Governor Hochul to sign this important reform,” said Executive Director Barbara Smith Warner.
New York is currently one of only 15 states — including Texas, Indiana, Mississippi, and Missouri — that still require voters to have a legally defined excuse to request a mailed-out ballot or face criminal penalties. According to the U.S. Election Assistance Commission, the state has also often lagged behind the rest of the U.S. in voter turnout, placing 38th in 2022.
Stanford research demonstrated that elevated levels of mailed-out ballots hold no partisan advantage. Further, a Rutgers study released this week revealed that in states with improved access to mailed-out ballots, turnout among disabled voters increased dramatically from 2018-2022.
“When this bill is signed and becomes law, New York will be one of 36 U.S. states, covering over 75% of U.S. voters, that empower all their voters to receive this level of access to their ballots, and when voters have better access to mailed-out ballots, they vote in higher numbers, which strengthens our democracy,” Smith Warner noted.
About National Vote At Home Institute
The National Vote at Home Institute is a nonpartisan nonprofit organization that aims to increase voters’ access to, use of, and confidence in voting by mail, or “voting at home” — in which voters receive mailed-out paper ballots; return them either by postage-free mail or in-person to a wide range of accessible, convenient, and secure locations; and can track them online, in real-time, to ensure their vote is counted.