Hillary Clinton proposed Thursday that Americans be automatically registered to vote when they turn 18, unless they opt out, one of a series of voting-law changes she said would expand access to the ballot box.So, if you're a man -- and not a male-leaning female-born whatever -- you have to register for the Selective Service at 18. They'd love to automate this process, since the concept is zero-noncompliance. But you actually have to go down to the Post Office and send them a card, or at least I did at 18. I assume there are other options now, but they all require you to do something. Because they assume you won't do it for free, there are significant legal penalties for failing to do it.
Most Americans like to drive. So states everywhere have passed "Motor-Voter" laws, requiring the DMV or MVA or whatever they have in their state to ask you if you want to register to vote while you're obtaining a license. Clearly, this doesn't get everyone because we're still talking about it.
Public libraries serve lots of the folks we are hoping to reach, at least we hope they do. It'd be great if they were taking advantage of free opportunities to educate themselves. So when you apply for a library card in many states, they automatically ask you if you'd like to register to vote. But there's no guarantee you go to the library, and if you do, you only need a card to check out books -- not to use the free computers.
We've chased this concept a long way already, and as far as I know we don't have a good idea of how to do what she's talking about. Maybe someone will ask her how she intends to accomplish what Selective Service, Motor-Voter and the Public Library plans haven't managed to do. Assuming, that is, that anyone is allowed to ask her a question.