This piece was penned with Bri McLarty of Nebraskans for Civic Reform.

Nothing is more fundamental to our democracy than the right to vote. For 50 years, the ACLU of Nebraska has been defending the rights of Nebraskans to have a voice in their government. The need for a modern and robust democracy is the core of Nebraskans for Civic Reform’s mission. Together, our organizations have worked in a broad coalition since NCRs founding to protect and expand the right to vote in Nebraska.

This year, like many recent years, we are working to defeat a voter ID bill in the Nebraska Legislature. For law makers interested in suppressing the vote, recent court decisions are not on their side. The Texas Voter ID law upon which the Nebraska proposal is based was gutted by the 5th Circuit in August, 2015.

Our democracy will be its best when as many citizens as possible are registered to vote and making their voice heard in elections. In 2016, at least 10 states will be implementing new restrictions on voting that could turn away thousands of voters across the country. Nebraska has so far been headed in the right direction by looking at ways to expand access to democracy and defeat threats to voting rights.

Early Voting YES! Anyone can apply to vote early without providing a reason. Learn more at the Secretary of State’s website.
Mail-in Voting YES! Anyone can request a vote-by-mail ballot. Get your vote-by-mail form from the Secretary of State.
Former Felon Voting YES! Two-years after the completion of a sentence, a Nebraskan can register to vote.
Online Voter Registration YES! You can register at the Secretary of State’s website.
Same-day Registration NO. Nebraska has yet to allow for people to register to vote on Election Day, though a pilot proposal has been introduced.

Learn more about your right to vote!

This year, we hope will be no different. Lawmakers in Nebraska have tried multiple versions of voter ID, all of which are legally suspect. No matter how much lawmakers attempt to narrow their proposals, the bottom line is that they have been unable to prove that voter fraud is an issue in Nebraska and there is no reason to enact voter ID proposals that could turn anyone away from democracy!

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