February 22, 2013

While I heartily support the various measures to improve voter registration and voting efficiency and accessibility, described in the Feb. 15 article “Obama hit from both sides on election reform,” citizens can take some steps of their own to make the current system work better.

First, they can volunteer to be election officers. Spending one (admittedly long) day and several training hours a year to work at the polls can help make democracy work better.

Second, they can prepare themselves to vote before getting to the voting machines. Many long lines at polling places are caused by voters who, despite many opportunities to learn what is on the ballot, leave the reading of ballot questions and bond referenda until the last moment. This slows down the process.

Third, until the law is changed to provide for a more automatic process, they can remember to change their voter registration addresses when they move; this would help get them to the correct polling places, which will prevent lines from forming as their registration information is checked.

Last, but certainly not least, they can pay attention to what is happening in their states with regard to voting laws and encourage their legislators to enact changes to make the system work more efficiently.

Therese Martin, Reston

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