II. Election News This Week
Happy 26th Amendment Day y’all! March 23 marks the 45th anniversary of the passage of the 26th Amendment which lowered the nation’s voting age from 21 to 18. West Virginia Senator Jennings Randolph lead the initiative to lower the voting age. Over 29 years, Randolph introduced legislation 11 times to lower the voting age. Finally in 1971 by a 94-0 vote the Senate supported the initiative and the House followed suit with a 401-19 vote. Three-fourths of the states had ratified the amendment by July 1, 2971.
This has just not been New Hampshire’s month. Last week towns across the state battled a blizzard and state officials over local elections and this week the town of Lisbon is scrambling to figure out how to hold its rescheduled election after three members of the town’s Board of Selectmen resigned on the eve of the election. State law requires that a majority of the board be present at voting sites without the three, the town didn’t have a majority. The state allowed the town to swear in three temporary members just for Tuesday’s voting. "We met the legal requirements for the voting, and we're voting today, which is good,” Town Moderator Robert Cook told WMUR. “So we're feeling good about that."
Colorado Springs Clerk Sarah Johnson is reminding voters to unfold their ballots in order to vote for everything on it. The ballot contains three issue questions and one candidate question and some voters have called to express confusion and a few have returned the ballots without casting a vote for the candidates.
Congratulations to the Alabama Secretary of State’s office for being a winner of the National Association of State Boards of Education Award for Outstanding Leadership in Voter Education from The National Student/Parent Mock Election. “We’re honored to receive this award,” Secretary of State John Merrill said in a statement. “Voting is one of the most fundamental rights we receive as American citizens, and it is our duty to teach the next generation the importance of that right as early as possible. The Alabama Votes Student Mock Election provided teachers and parents with the necessary materials and opportunity to share the voting experience with their students, which will benefit them in the near future when they reach the legal voting age.”
Personnel News: Nebraska Secretary of State John Gale has announced that he will not seek re-election in 2018. He is currently in his 17th year as secretary. Rochelle Long has been appointed interim clerk in Klamath County, Oregon. Ken Lawrence is now the chair of the Montgomery County, Pennsylvania election board. Johnson County, Iowa Auditor Travis Weipert is considering a run for secretary of state. Kevin Smith has been appointed to the Lake County, Indiana board of elections and registration. Marlene Jensen has retired as the Bingham County, Idaho elections director. Scott Hourigan has been appoint chairman of the Salem County, New Jersey board of elections. Betsy Hundley is preparing to retire as the longtime elections coordinator for Livingston County, Michigan. Congratulations to Kentucky Secretary of State Allison Lundergan Grimes for being named the Kentucky Communicator of the Year by the Kentucky District of the National Speech and Debate Association. Dawson County, Georgia board of elections member Tom Foley has retired.