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California launches online voter registration

SACRAMENTO -- Californians can register to vote with the click of a mouse under a new online system launched Wednesday.

Secretary of State Debra Bowen said she hopes making it easier to register to vote will mean more participation in the Nov. 6 presidential election by many of the the 6.5 million Californians who are eligible to vote but who have not yet registered.

"I think it’s going to be huge," Bowen said of the new system, noting that 3,000 people had used it to register in the first 12 hours.

Until now, Californians had to fill out an application, sign it in paper form and mail or deliver it to an official elections office before they could be put on the voter rolls, a process that could take weeks. The online system will search the Department of Motor Vehicles database for the applicant’s driver's license or identification card number, date of birth and last four digits of her Social Security number.

If the information matches what the voter provided on the registration form, the voter can authorize elections officials to use an electronic image of their DMV signature to complete the application. After that, the voter only needs to click a "submit’’ button. County elections officials would still need to verify the information.

Read the full story in the Los Angeles Times HERE.