On June 8, the Republican-sponsored New Hampshire Senate Bill 3, which may complicate same-day voter registration for New Hampshire college students, …… passed in the state Senate 14-9. The bill changes what domicile means in the context of voting and stipulates that proof of residence is required for same-day voters, including a written statement that verifies voters’ home addresses. It also authorizes government agents to visit a voter’s home to make sure that it is the voter’s primary residence.
The NH Democratic party, the League of Women Voters and three individual voters are using the state over this law, which they believe will keep people who are legally entitled to vote from voting.
Hillsborough County Judge Charles Temple let stand all the non-penalty provisions of the new domicile law and his 13-page ruling came just before the opening of the polls for a New Hampshire House of Representatives special election Tuesday in Laconia and Belmont.
“The average voter seeking to register for the first time very well may decide that casting a vote is not worth a possible, $5,000 fine, a year in jail, or throwing himself/herself at the mercy of the prosecutor’s discretion,” Temple wrote.
Recently, Judge Temple combined the NH Democratic Party and League of Women Voters lawsuits into a single lawsuit.
Next step is a structuring conference scheduled for Oct 30 in Hillsborough County Superior Court.