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Arizona Democrats launch voter expansion project

PHOENIX — Less than a week after a federal judge upheld an Arizona voter identification law, the state’s Democratic Party held a press conference to discuss the Democratic National Committee’s Voter Expansion Project.

They plan to focus on educating people about the registration process and working with administrators to ensure smooth operations at polling places.

“There’s three groups that are very disproportionately represented at the ballot box: voters under the age of 30, single women and minorities,” said Arizona Democratic Party Executive Director DJ Quinlan. “They actually represent 58 percent of all of the eligible voters in Arizona.”

Quinlan said the party wants to expand the voter base to reflect the population and Arizona’s law that requires new voters to provide a birth certificate, passport or other documentation to prove their U.S. citizenship makes it more difficult for people to register.

DNC Director of Voter Expansion Project Pratt Wiley asked, “Why is the system becoming more complicated when everything else in our life is becoming simpler through the use of technology, through the use of information?”

Republicans and other supporters of voter ID laws say they will prevent voter fraud. In 2012, News21, a national investigative reporting project, released its findings into election fraud allegations and cases across the country. The “Who Can Vote” project found seven cases of alleged fraud in Arizona since 2000.

The push to register new voters also comes as fewer Arizonans choose to identify with Democrats or Republicans. Earlier this month, Arizona Sec. of State Ken Bennett released the latest registration figures which show Independents have passed Republicans as the largest voter bloc in the state.