16 Geo. J. on Poverty L. & Pol'y 345 (2009)
Same Day Voter Registration: Post-Crawford Reform to Address the Growing Burdens on Lower-Income Voters

handle is hein.journals/geojpovlp16 and id is 349 raw text is: Georgetown Journal on Poverty Law & Policy
Volume XVI, Number 2, Spring 2009
NOTE
Same Day Voter Registration:
Post-Crawford Reform to Address the Growing
Burdens on Lower-Income Voters
Pedro De Oliveira*
INTRODUCTION
While in recent years much media and scholarly attention has been directed at
voter identification laws, following the Supreme Court's 2008 decision uphold-
ing such a law in Crawford v. Marion County Election Board,1 this paper will
focus on another type of election regulation that disparately burdens lower-
income Americans: advance deadlines for voter registration. Research shows that
registration deadlines decrease voting rates more severely among lower-income
Americans, in part because they have less access to registration assistance3 and
because they are more likely to move from one residence to another.4 In the early
1970s, the Supreme Court struck down a 90-day registration deadline as being
too long in Dunn v. Blumstein,5 while it separately upheld a 50-day deadline in
Burns v. Fortson.6 Since then, six additional states have joined Maine,
* J.D., 2009, Georgetown University Law Center. I would like to thank Maria Madalena De Oliveira,
whose courage and caring spirit inspire me to tackle poverty's status quo. Thanks also to Peter Edelman,
for showing me the many ways lawyers can combat poverty, and to Kristen Clarke, Jonah Goldman, Jon
Greenbaum, Marcia Johnson-Blanco, and Bob Kengle for teaching me about voting rights specifically.
Finally, I would like to thank my colleagues on the Georgetown Journal on Poverty Law & Policy -
especially Amy Killelea - for their help in editing this piece.  2009, Pedro de Oliveira.
1. Crawford v. Marion County Election Bd., 128 S.Ct. 1610, 1615 (2008) (Stevens, J., lead opinion).
2. See DAN DEVROYE, DOES Low REGISTRATION INCREASE CLASS BIAS IN VOTING? EVIDENCE FROM THE
FIFTY STATES (2001), available at http://ssm.com/abstract=523022. See also Craig Leonard Brians &
Bernard Grofman, Election Day Registration's Effect on U.S. Voter Turnout, 82 Soc. Sci. Q. 170, 170-83
(2001).
3. See DOUGLAS R. HEss & ScoTr NOVAKOWSKI, UNEQUAL ACCESS: NEGLECTING THE NATIONAL VOTER
REGISTRATION ACT, 1995-2007 1 (2008), available at http://projectvote.org/fileadmin/ProjectVote/
NVRAProject/UnequalAccessFinal.pdf (many public assistance offices are not providing voter
registration assistance as required by federal law).
4. See U.S. Census Bureau, Table 11: General Mobility of Persons 15 Years and Over, by Region, Age,
and Income in 2005: 2005 to 2006, http://www.census.gov/population/www/socdemo/migrate/
cps2006.html (last visited Jan. 21, 2009).
5. Dunn v. Blumstein, 405 U.S. 330, 331-33 (1972).
6. Burns v. Fortson, 410 U.S. 686,686-87 (1973).

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