Miss. Gov. Declares February as Voter Registration MonthBy Lawayne Childrey | Published 05 Feb 2014 06:05pm |
A new census report shows that nearly 360 thousand Mississippians over the age of 18 are not registered to vote. MPB's Lawayne Childrey reports how state officials are hoping to increase the number of registered voters.
During a brief ceremony at the capitol yesterday Governor Phil Bryant declared February as Voter Registration Month. Bryant says the goal is to remind Mississippians that the key to democracy lies with voting.
"360 thousand that could exercise that great opportunity as an American to go and vote and are simply not doing so. Some people may have just come of age and have the opportunity to vote. Others may be moving here from other states. So we're trying to encourage those Mississippians that are here to please go register to vote."
With the states new photo identification requirement beginning this June, Secretary of State Delbert Hoseman says he hopes it will serve as an extra incentive for Mississippian's to register.
" We now have 14 regional coordinators across Mississippi encouraging people from the board of supervisors, the city councils the faith based community, our civic clubs. I think that will raise the awareness of people reregistering to vote. I think it will help quite frankly so I'm quite pleased with that."
Derrick Johnson, President of the state's NAACP supports the efforts to reach more voters. However, he's is also urging state leaders to do more.
If there commitment is true that will open that all Mississippians exercise that right that so many individuals died for defending this country . Died for exercising that right such as Medgar Evers that they will support an opportunity to expand access by supporting same day registration, by supporting early registration and early voting.
In order to register to vote you must be a resident of the state county and city 30 days prior to the election. You must also be at least 18 years old, not convicted of certain crimes and you must be mentally competent. Lawayne Childrey, MPB News.
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