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electionlineWeekly — May 19, 2016

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IV. Legislative Updates

Alaska: Bucking a trend, the city of Bethel has voted to stick with precinct-based polling sites instead of moving to vote-by-mail. Councilmembers voting against the proposal expressed concerns that it could lead to voter fraud.

Illinois: A Senate committee has approved legislation that could make Illinois only the sixth state to automatically register voters.

Minnesota: The Senate has approved legislation that will move Minnesota from a caucus system to a presidential primary system beginning in 2020. Under the primary plan, parties would still have caucuses but the binding presidential preference vote would be held during a primary.

Ohio: The Senate, but a 23-9 party-line vote, has approved legislation that would require those filing legal challenges to keep the polls open on election day to post a bond equal to the cost of keeping the polls open.

Also in Ohio, this week the Senate took additional testimony on a bill before the State and Local Government Committee that would allow victims of domestic violence, stalking and other crimes be allowed to shield their addresses from the public in government databases such as voter registration databases.