RICHMOND, Va. – Gov. Ralph Northam announced two legislative proposals on Monday that could help make voting easier in Virginia.
In an effort to increase access to voting, Northam wants Election Day to be named a state holiday in Virginia; however, to maintain the same number of state holidays, the measure would repeal Lee-Jackson Day as a holiday.
“Voting is a fundamental right,” said Northam. “But in a state that once put up tremendous barriers to voting, too many people are still unable to participate meaningfully in our democracy. By making it easier—not harder—to vote, these proposals will ensure we are building a government that is truly representative of the people we serve. I look forward to working with the General Assembly to pass these important measures into law.”
Another piece of legislation the governor wants to be passed is the expansion of early voting in Virginia.
Currently, Virginia voters who wish to vote absentee must provide a reason, from an approved list, as to why they are unable to vote on Election Day. If passed this new legislation will allow early voting during the 45 days before an election.