It’s a new age for voter registration in Washington State. As soon as next week, eligible voters there will be able to register to vote via Facebook with a new app that is about to be launched. Potential voters will find the app on the secretary of state’s Facebook page, as Shane Hamlin, co-director of elections for the state, explained.
As a first of its kind, Facebook has teamed with the state of Washington and Microsoft to create an app that lets voters use the “MyVote” app to register. Voters should know that, when they download the app, they are agreeing to let Facebook have access to their name, date of birth and other information that is pre-filled into the voter registration form.
As one news source explained about the new voter registration Facebook app,
” Facebook is integrated with many facets of daily living, but Washington’s initiative is a first. The state has been allowing online registration since 2008, and was the second state to do so. Currently, only 13 states allow online voter registration, none of which involve Facebook. Reportedly, the state wants to simplify the process for voters and make it easy for people to register. Facebook users will be able to access the application from Washington’s secretary of state Facebook page.”
Voters will have a slew of other opportunities with the app as well. While registering to vote, Washington residents will also have a new way to update personal information, have access to voter guides and get replacement ballots.
While Hamlin said that the state didn’t create the app for the key purpose of focusing on young people, only 10% of 18-29 year olds came out to vote in the 2008 presidential election according to CNN election results. Perhaps this will make a difference in the state.