ASSEMBLY DEMS PUSHING INTERNET-BASED VOTING FOR MILITARY PERSONNEL OVERSEAS

Greenstein, Moriarty, DeAngelo, Milam, Albano Hope to Establish Pilot Project

A group of Democratic legislators are pushing a bill that would make it easier for members of the military stationed overseas to vote in certain elections by establishing an Internet-based pilot project. The bill, A-2846, was recently introduced by Assembly members Linda Greenstein, Paul Moriarty, Wayne DeAngelo, Matthew Milam and Nelson Albano.

The pilot project would take place during the primary election and general election occurring in the calendar year in which the bill takes effect and pertain to any person in military service who, by reason of active duty or service, is absent from their place of residence in New Jersey where they are qualified to vote.

“This bill would give democracy a 21st century makeover to make voting more accessible,” said Greenstein (D-Mercer/Middlesex).

“Our men and women fighting overseas to preserve democracy deserve every opportunity to actively take part in it,” said Moriarty (D-Camden/Gloucester).

“Military members overseas lay their life on the line every day to protect our freedoms, the right to vote being chief among them,” said DeAngelo (D-Mercer/Middlesex).

“It’s my sincere hope that this project will prove successful and eventually become permanent so that our men and women will always have easy access to the foremost tenet of democracy,” said Milam (D-Cape May/Atlantic/Cumberland).

“If you’re on active duty overseas, the last thing on your mind is remembering the multiple deadlines for requesting and filing an absentee ballot. This is a simple way to make life for our soldiers a little easier,” said Albano (D-Cape May/Atlantic/Cumberland).

Specifically, the bill would require the Secretary of State to create an Internet-based voting system for the pilot project that uses available technology to ensure the security of the ballot being voted, the privacy of the voter casting the ballot, and the integrity of the voting process. The Secretary of State would also be required to employ any Internet-based voting guidelines put forth by the federal government and consult with local election officials while developing the system. Sufficient notice would also be required to be given to the public and overseas voters in terms of the requirements for participating in the elections during which Internet voting is to be available.

The Secretary of State would then have four months after the general election to submit a written report to the Governor and the Legislature with recommendations as to whether the program should be permanently adopted or expanded to conduct further assessments of its feasibility.