Pennsylvania set for major election reforms

Tony Romeo
October 29, 2019 - 8:20 pm
Gov. Tom Wolf speaking.

The Office of Governor Tom Wolf via Flickr

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HARRISBURG, Pa. (KYW Newsradio) — Major changes to how elections are conducted in Pennsylvania will be coming next year. A bill that would overhaul elections in the state is now on the way to Gov. Wolf’s desk, and a spokesman says Wolf will sign it. 

The bill was negotiated by the Wolf administration and Republicans who control the legislature. Both the House and Senate Tuesday passed the fast-tracked bill and sent it to the governor. 

Related: Pennsylvania House panel advances voting overhaul bill

Democrats like Sen. Vincent Hughes of Philadelphia remain strenuously opposed to a provision that eliminates straight party ticket voting. 

Hughes said during training sessions with new machines to be used in Philadelphia, voters’ top concern was the straight ticket option. 

"Consistently, over and over again, they asked for that option. It’s being taken from them," he said. 

But citing other provisions in the bill including a no excuse, vote-by-mail option and extending the deadline for voter registration to 15 days before an election instead of the current 30 days, Wolf said the bill is a compromise that will make elections more convenient and secure.