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PNS Daily Newscast - August 5, 2020 

A massive explosion kills dozens and injures thousands in Beirut; and child care is key to getting Americans back to work.

2020Talks - August 5, 2020 

Election experts testify before the US House that more funding is necessary. And Arizona, Kansas, Michigan, Missouri and Washington state had primaries yesterday; Hawaii and Tennessee have them later this week.

MT Requiring Passports to Register to Vote?

January 19, 2007

Montana set voting records in the last election, with the new late voter registration law getting the credit for bringing more than 7,000 voters to the polls who wouldn't have been eligible before. It may not happen again, though, because a few legislators are backing bills that would make it harder to register and vote. One plan would do away with most of the popular late voter registration window. Theresa Keaveny with the Montana Conservation Voters Education Fund says the policy gave Montana bragging rights with an excellent voter turnout last November.

"It increased citizen participation by almost 7,500 voters in Montana. That contributed to Montana's great voter turnout, one of the highest rates in the nation."

Keavney adds that doing away with late voter registration will shut many Montana residents out of the polls "By depriving voters who move to the state, or move into a new voting jurisdiction, from registering and casting their ballots."

Those supporting shortening the late registration window say it was difficult for some counties to meet the requirements.

Another plan would require passports or birth certificates to register to vote, with backers saying that will prove citizenship.

Keaveny counters that the plan is unnecessary, because voters already have to present valid identification. She says it would also add needless red tap and election costs.

"This Draconian measure is unparalleled, there is no other state that requires that type of identification."

One of the bills referenced is HB 281.

Deborah Smith/Eric Mack, Public News Service - MT