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Deadline Today for Oregonians to Register to Vote

Today is the deadline for Oregonians to register to vote. (The Bus Project)
Today is the deadline for Oregonians to register to vote. (The Bus Project)
October 18, 2016

PORTLAND, Ore. – Today is the deadline for Oregonians to register to vote in the November election. Residents can register online before midnight or in person at their local election office in most parts of the state by 5 P.M.

Nikki Fisher is the executive director of the Oregon Bus Project, a youth-led coalition traveling the state to get young people registered and involved in the election. She said this year in Oregon a lot more young people could be voting because of the new "motor voter" law, which automatically registers people who apply for or renew their driver's licenses or identification cards.

"We do know that the analysis of the new registrants, over half of them are under the age of 35," she said. "Traditionally, folks who are under the age of 35 move more frequently, have less income than those traditional registrants, and so we're really excited to put a ballot in the hands of all eligible voters in this state."

To date, more than 238,000 people have been added to the voter rolls because of the motor voter law in Oregon. Four other states have followed Oregon's lead on automatic voter registration.

Sexual assault allegations against Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump and the fact that Hillary Clinton is the first female to lead a major-party ticket have put women's issues in sharp focus this year. Fisher said it's clear from new data collected in the Women's Foundation of Oregon's Count Her In report that women are engaged in this election. In the state, 58 percent of women are registered to vote compared with 53 percent of men and 43 percent of women nationwide. She said the report also points to the many issues engaging women.

"We see issues highlighted with that new report about the state of women," added. "Women making less than their male counterparts. There's a ton of issues that women particularly care about this election cycle."

Oregon will begin mailing out ballots on Wednesday for the Nov. 8 election.

Eric Tegethoff, Public News Service - OR