O’Malley Signs Law to Expand Early Voting
Governor Martin O’Malley signed legislation improving access to voting in the state on May 2. Maryland first allowed early voting during the 2010 primary elections. In November 2012, more than 16 percent of registered voters in Maryland cast their ballots during the early voting period. Some polling places experienced long waits for early voting.
The legislation expands the early voting process in Maryland by adding early voting sites, extending hours and allowing more citizens to have access to absentee ballots. Early voting will be extended by two days and two hours for presidential elections and by two days for every other election. The bill also allows same-day voter registration during the early voting period so voters will be able to register and vote at the same time – increasing voter turnout and benefiting voters who may miss the voter registration deadline, and makes it easier and faster for voters to apply for and receive absentee ballots using a secure online application process.