Today is National Voter Registration Day, the biggest, nonpartisan celebration of democracy! Every year, thousands of nonprofits hold on-the-ground voter registration events across the country while major companies lift up the importance of civic engagement everywhere — from social media to your favorite streaming apps and shows! To date, we’ve helped nearly 4.5 MILLION Americans get registered or update their registration as we work to ensure EVERY eligible person is registered to vote so we can get ever closer to the fully inclusive democracy we think is possible.


Comments: 362 • Responses: 14  • Date: 

Alokir97 karma

What are your thoughts on voter ID laws?

In my home country and many others it's mandatory to bring your ID and residency card to vote, so I'm genuinely curious as to why it's such a hot topic in the US.

NatlVoterRegDay84 karma

One challenge with voter ID laws is that they vary by state, so, especially for people who frequently or have recently moved, it can prevent a challenge at the polls if they realize too late they’re unprepared. Lower-income people, those who have just turned 18, returning citizens, and people experiencing homelessness are also less likely to have adequate identification in many states. VoteRiders is a partner of ours that helps individuals across the country learn about and attain the ID they need in order to vote. (

Patrick_Yaa41 karma

Why is there a need to register to vote? What is the reasoning behind installing this extra step between a citizen and their right to vote or what could be seen as a civic duty? (Non-US resident here)

NatlVoterRegDay36 karma

Voter registration is a helpful tool for election administrators. There is no other governmental entity or office that creates a list that could contain all eligible voters in a state. Election administrators use these lists (called voter rolls) to not only ensure that elections are accurate and fair, but also to communicate with voters via sample ballots, mail ballot applications, and information about elections. Online registration, automatic voter registration, and election day registration are a few ways that the “extra step” is as small and easy to scale as possible.

bmbreath11 karma

Have you guys seen hostility towards what you are doing from all of the conspiracy stuff secondary to last election? Have you had crazies threaten you thinking you are some dark state agency trying to register them for the "other party" or anything like that?

NatlVoterRegDay17 karma

Some efforts to register voters, especially those by Black and Indigenous-led organizations, have long been targeted and harassed for trying to increase voter participation. Even election officials themselves have faced threats. National Voter Registration Day is a nonpartisan holiday with the support of election officials and carried out by businesses, nonprofits, campuses, and other organizations in the spirit of democracy. Since the holiday was founded in 2012, the goal has been to turn down the heat on partisan divides and come together to raise awareness about voter registration opportunities. While not every potential voter will be receptive to our partners’ efforts, we know that the vast majority of individuals appreciate the work of nonpartisan voter registration.

NatlVoterRegDay12 karma

Combating misinformation is critical for the integrity of our elections, so we follow the lead of organizations like the National Association of Secretaries of State and National Association of State Election Directions and partner with local election officials to uplift accurate information about registering and voting.

Tosham127 karma

I've only ever lived in vote by mail states and sometimes I think those of us that haven't experienced voter disenfranchisement don't understand it. I recently had a family member move to Texas and she says it's too hard to register and too hard to vote she won't. That's the goal right? How hard is it really to register and then vote in these states?

NatlVoterRegDay22 karma

First, in your role as a person who probably cares about voting, I’d recommend being as supportive as you can and minimize any shaming of not voting. While we advocate everyone to vote and support the least number of barriers for voters to vote, there are invisible and visible barriers that can be particularly hard for people to overcome. These barriers range from ‘invisible’ barriers like mental health issues getting in the way of tracking these deadlines, readability of the forms (some states take great care to make sure their forms are readable and mistakes are minimized) to more visible ones like getting to the polling places or election offices. Particularly in Texas, the low number of and distance to these locations can make it harder to go in person to vote/register/fix any issues/etc. One of my friends’ parents in Alabama had to drive over an hour away to get to their polling place, as opposed to my home state in MA where I only had to walk across the street to the mail ballot drop box at 10pm. A few ways vote by mail states minimize those barriers more so than other states, is they may include automatic voter registration, so the person once going through the DMV is already registered, doesn’t need to fill out a separate form to register and doesn’t need to fill out a separate form to request a ballot.

NatlVoterRegDay16 karma

However, ultimately, how much the person realizes how voting impacts their lives has great sway over how much they’re willing to overcome any barriers at all. If they just moved, it’s likely they’re not as familiar with when elections are, who’s their rep, and how the laws affect them. If they don’t know what’s at stake, it’s difficult to be motivated to make your voice a part of that. Therefore we recommend sites like ballotready, ballotpedia, and vote411 to make sure one knows what’s going to be at stake every election.

logicordie7 karma

How can we help voters be informed about the candidates? Media coverage has become excessively one sided. We've seen large drives to collect uniformed voters, last minute, by parties worried about losing. This is evident by the vote counts hugely exceeding registered voter counts. How can we make voting less about a popularity contest and more about informed decisions on candidates?

NatlVoterRegDay21 karma

There are a few civic tech sites tackling this! vote411,, and ballotpedia! They have researchers getting info from candidate websites, newspapers, etc trying to aggregate it in one place for people to view. It's still research though and we need more word out about these efforts.

symbifox6 karma

I live outside the country but am registered in Texas. With their new laws I don't think they will let me vote via mail in vote. How can I vote?

NatlVoterRegDay20 karma

Our friends at Overseas Vote Foundation ( should be able to help you navigate your state laws so you can get and cast a ballot. The form is a little long, but they're the best equipped to help you navigate the new changes. The key is to do this quickly! Deadlines will be coming quickly and the mailing and return delivery of your ballot could take longer depending where you’re currently located.

not_levar_burton5 karma

What extra efforts are you doing/need to be done in the states that are now putting in more restrictions on voting? Or has that impacted voter registration?

NatlVoterRegDay12 karma

Most of the state laws that are changing are about the number of early voting days, mail-in voting rules, and other policies around voting itself. These don’t directly impact registration, but rather voting. The main policy that impacts registration is how aggressively election officials remove inactive voters from the rolls. According to Brennan, 7 states have made it easier for election officials to remove inactive voters (FWIW - other states made registration easier). Depending on what state a person is in, this can mean that people who once thought they were registered finds out on Election Day that they are not. We encourage folks doing voter registration work to not just ask if the person is registered, but if they have moved, changed their name, or not voted in a while (this last one is where the inactive voter purges come from). If so, they should register anyway just to be safe. As an added resource, most online voter registration portals allow voters to verify their current status on the rolls.

not_levar_burton1 karma

Do you get involved in letting voters know about the extra regulations when registering? Such as "now that you're registered, you need to get an ID as you will need a picture ID to vote..."

NatlVoterRegDay7 karma

We are a collaboration of organizations that, for today, are focused on voter registration. After National Voter Registration Day, we circulate an array of #VoteReady resources to our many partners around the country that they can in turn distribute within their communities. These resources include everything from learning about what’s on the ballot, where to find information on polling location and hours, early voting rules, voter ID requirements, and the 866-OUR-VOTE hotline for those experiencing problems at the polls. For Voter ID requirements, I’d suggest groups go to

derouse3 karma

Thanks for doing this! What makes this NVRD different than that in 2020 or during federal elections? Put another way how difficult have you found it to register voters in an "off-year" election?

NatlVoterRegDay7 karma

While local elections do not get the same attention, the candidates will have a bigger impact on voters’ daily lives than those in national elections. This is why community partners are so important for raising awareness and reaching voters locally. One great example is happening in Cleveland, where sports teams, the county elections office, and nonprofits are teaming up with our Ohio State Captain Cleveland VOTES to make registration fun, visible, and convenient.

Kaptainkarl761 karma

Do you prefer coke or pepsi?

NatlVoterRegDay6 karma

lmao I prefer pepsi but others on our team might prefer coke - Caroline

tacella1 karma

In your expert opinion, how valid/overblown are the media reports of voting laws being passed by certain states being passed to suppress minority votes?

NatlVoterRegDay24 karma

Rule changes in some states are making voting harder. However, what is not being reported in the media is that a host of other states are making voting and registration easier. It’s a mixed bag and it really depends on what state you are in. Brennan Center has a good summary of the policies moving or enacted in the various states at Some of our partner groups are involved in these policy debates, on both sides, but as a collaboration of organizations organized around the holiday, we’re focused primarily on raising awareness of registration opportunities.

Meowkins10 karma


NatlVoterRegDay19 karma

Though highly unlikely, the only scenario where I could see this is a Same Day Registration state where lots of people register at the polls on Election Day, which is perfectly legal in that case. That said, there have been no credible changes of widespread fraud. In fact, election officials from both sides of the aisle have issued formal statements calling it the most secure election in history. See We work closely with the National Association of Secretaries of State in promoting their #TrustedInfo resources