Blogs related to important developments and innovations in election administration around the country.

Two bar graphs, one showing the number of by-mail ballots transmitted, returned, and status unknown in presidential elections years (2008, 2012, 2016) and the other bar graph showing the number of by-mail ballots transmitted, returned, and status unknown in midterm election years (2010, 2014, 2018). For 2008, 28,465,784 ballots were transmitted, 23,073,382 ballots were returned, and 1,605,620 ballots were deemed status unknown. For 2012, 33,070,385 ballots were transmitted, 27,624,254 ballots were returned,
Oct 22 , 2020

Many states are expanding and encouraging the use of vote by mail options for the 2020 elections, largely due to voter safety concerns posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. While these concerns have elevated the topic of voting by mail nationally, data shows that voters have utilized the option to vote absentee or by mail in increasing numbers for the last decade.

Title slide with headshots of SOS Paul Pate and Lt Col Lawrence Yazzie
Jul 28 , 2020

EAC Vice Chairman Donald Palmer spoke with Iowa Secretary of State Paul Pate and Lieutenant Colonel Lawrence Yazzie from the Iowa National Guard about how they have worked together since 2018 to secure elections and Election Day in the state.

Meagan Wolfe and Brigadier General Robyn Blader
Jul 02 , 2020

EAC Vice Chairman Donald Palmer was joined by Meagan Wolfe (Wisconsin Election Commission Administrator) and Brigadier General Robyn Blader (Wisconsin National Guard) for a Zoom interview to discuss how they worked together to

EAC Updates
May 18 , 2020

Authors: Jessica Bowers, Joshua Michael Franklin

image of Doug Chapin standing at the front with workshop participants seated at the front facing forum attendees
Feb 28 , 2020

Last week, the U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) hosted the 2020 Elections Disability, Accessibility, and Security Forum. The day-long gathering featured discussions on pressing issues to voters with disabilities and election officials amidst growing security needs.

image of Doug Chapin standing at the front with workshop participants seated at the front facing forum attendees
Feb 28 , 2020

Last week, the U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) hosted the 2020 Elections Disability, Accessibility, and Security Forum. The day-long gathering featured discussions on pressing issues to voters with disabilities and election officials amidst growing security needs.

Honoring an Elections Tradition: EAC 2019 "I Voted" Sticker Clearie Awards
Oct 22 , 2019
This year’s EAC Clearinghouse Awards competition will accept submissions for a special new category: original and creative “I voted” stickers. The EAC announced this category in September when it launched the 2019 Clearies.  Below are additional details about our fun new contest. We hope you will reach out and submit your own homegrown stickers!   
Oct 08 , 2019
As National Cybersecurity Awareness Month, October is a great time to highlight Securing WisVote, a 2018 Clearie awardee in the Outstanding Innovations in Elections category.
Sep 24 , 2019
It’s National Voter Registration Day and the EAC is pleased to mark the occasion with one last reminder to plan to participate in the next election! As FDR’s famous quote reminds us, the right to vote starts with each of us, and the first step is voter registration.
Sep 23 , 2019
The new school year is in full swing across the United States, which makes this a fitting time to highlight a Clearie award winner in the category of Recruiting, Training, and Retaining Election Workers. This week, I caught up with Megan Anderson, Principal of Ely Memorial High School, to discuss their collaborative effort pairing students and veterans to serve at the polls.
Sep 13 , 2019
This week, the EAC launched the fourth annual Clearinghouse Awards, better known as the “Clearies.” In conjunction with our call for submissions, during September and October, we are highlighting past Clearie entrants and awardees. Recently, I interviewed Michele White, Director of Elections and General Registrar for Virginia’s Prince William County Office of Elections, regarding their 2018 Clearie submission.
National Voter Registration Day: A Nationwide Partnership for Participation
Sep 12 , 2019

As an official supporter of the seventh annual National Voter Registration Day on September 24, 2019, the U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) is proud to support registration advocates around the nation to ensure that all eligible Americans have the opportunity to cast their ballot this year or in 2020.

Register to Vote and Keep Your Promise
Sep 03 , 2019

Registering to vote is much more than a bureaucratic formality. It’s a promise to participate in shaping our representative democracy by casting your ballot. And, it’s this sacred privilege of voting that makes National Voter Registration Day such an important event. It’s a time when Americans from all walks of life come together to encourage more citizens to take the first official step toward exercising one of their most important civic duties.

Plan to Vote: EAC Marks Seventh Annual National Voter Registration Day
Aug 28 , 2019

September 24, 2019 will mark the seventh annual National Voter Registration Day and, as an official partner in this effort, the EAC will spend the coming weeks helping you plan to vote in 2020!

A 2018 Clearie Contender: Tools for Achieving Website Accessibility
Aug 16 , 2019
In early September, the EAC will kick off the submission period for the fourth annual 2019 Clearinghouse Awards. Dubbed the “Clearies” for short, the national effort celebrates best practices in election administration and helps advance the EAC’s clearinghouse responsibilities under the Help America Vote Act.
EAC Providing Valuable Support for Election Officials, Voters Ahead of 2020 Elections
Jul 17 , 2019
In recent weeks, EAC Commissioners and staff have packed their bags and crisscrossed the nation to participate in conferences hosted by state and local election officials, as well as national gatherings of the National Association of Secretaries of State, the National Association of State Election Directors, the National Association of Counties and the International Association of Government Officials. The EAC’s four Commissioners have already visited 25 states in the first half of this year.
The Role of Design in the Vote-By-Mail Process: Envelopes Get Their Day in the Sun
May 23 , 2019
EAC staff enjoys learning from and hearing about the experiences of stakeholders in the election community. A recent discussion with Drew Davies, owner and design director of Oxide Design Co., provides insight that may be of interest to those curious about the design aspect of vote by mail materials.
Apr 01 , 2019
According to U.S. Census Bureau data, there are nearly 26 million people in the U.S with limited English proficiency and more than 66 millions who speak a language other than English at home. Such individuals can face challenges when attempting to register to vote and cast a ballot. The EAC is pleased to announce our newest resources that seek to strengthen language accessibility and help election officials serve voters with language needs.
Mar 04 , 2019
While the 2018 Midterm Elections were administrated without issue in the majority of jurisdictions, some voters did experience long lines, malfunctioning voting equipment and flawed ballot design that made it harder for them to vote, or in some cases, prevented them from casting a ballot. So, as election officials prepare for the next election, how can they ensure ballots are designed effectively?
Nov 26 , 2018
The November 30 deadline to enter the U.S. Election Assistance Commission’s (EAC) 2018 Clearinghouse competition is right around the corner. We want to hear from you about the initiatives that produced positive results during this election season. It’s easy to enter and a great way to celebrate your office’s successes.
Oct 02 , 2018
What’s your secret to a successful election that serves the needs of voters? The U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) invites you to tell the commission about your work and enter it for consideration in the third annual national competition for best practices in election administration.
Jul 20 , 2018
The EAC is pleased to announce the third panel of the Language Access Summit, “Above and Beyond Section 203: Voluntary Assistance and Other Proactive Measures,” moderated by Stacey Scholl, Senior Program Associate, Elections, Democracy Fund Voice.
Jul 19 , 2018
The EAC is pleased to announce the first panel of the Language Access Summit, “Current Issues and Looking Ahead to 2021,” moderated by Terry Ao Minnis, Senior Fellow and Consultant, Democracy Fund Voice.
Jun 08 , 2018
Recently, the EAC released its last in a series of deep dives into the 2016 Election Administration and Voting Survey (EAVS). These briefs provide an in-depth look at a variety of issues related to administering elections and use data to help better understand these issues.
May 24 , 2018
Election workers are vital to the administration of elections. However, their work and stories are largely overlooked. This month, the EAC is featuring the stories of several of these unsung heroes. For this latest edition, we spoke with Angelo H. Mino, who has served as an election worker in Johnson County, Kansas for 20 years.
May 14 , 2018
Betty Clark has served as an election worker in the township for nearly 55 years. She has also inspired two daughters, two sons-in-law and one granddaughter to be election workers as well. Betty’s first election was in 1964 when Lyndon B. Johnson and Barry Goldwater were on the ballot.
Apr 25 , 2018
As the EAC highlights election workers this month, we caught up with Grace Wachlarowicz, Assistant City Clerk, Director of Elections for Minneapolis, Minnesota about her office’s Student Judge Program.
Mar 30 , 2018
The National Voter Registration Act of 1993 (NVRA), sometimes referred to as the “Motor Voter Act,” establishes certain voter registration requirements with respect to elections for federal office. Section 8, for example, contains provisions relevant to maintaining accurate voter registration lists and protections against inadvertently removing properly registered voters.
Mar 23 , 2018
The EAC has highlighted various approaches and resources states provide on voter list maintenance during List Maintenance Month. This week, the EAC is sharing an in-depth report from the National Association of Secretaries of State (NASS). Originally released in 2009, NASS updated the “Maintenance of State Voter Registration Lists: A Review of Relevant Policies and Procedures” last December.
Mar 16 , 2018
During List Maintenance Month, we are sharing information and resources from a number of states. This week, we are highlighting reports from the Pennsylvania Department of State, the Wisconsin Elections Commission, the Indiana Election Division and the California Secretary of State.
Mar 09 , 2018
In the coming weeks, the EAC will revisit some of the efforts made by election officials to keep voter rolls accurate, as well as highlight and update related research and news. Today, we focus on Virginia and its detailed information on how voter list maintenance is conducted.
Feb 21 , 2018
To serve our clearinghouse function, and help voters get registered and participate in these upcoming elections, the EAC recently updated its website with key dates and election information on federal elections in 2018.
Feb 13 , 2018
Voting by mail is becoming more prominent as more voters cast their ballot before Election Day. Recent data shows that as many as two in five ballots cast in federal elections are the result of absentee, mail or early voting.
Feb 08 , 2018
In November of 2017, the EAC announced the winners of our annual national competition for best practices in election administration, also known as the “Clearies.” Leading up to the 2018 elections, we will be periodically highlighting both Clearie winners and entries that didn’t receive an award, but still provide good models for election officials. It is our hope these best practices will help election officials enhance their processes and prepare for future elections.
Jan 16 , 2018
More than 175 election officials, voting rights activists, academics and others in the election community attended the EAC summit, which featured keynote speakers and expert on topics such as election security, voting accessibility, and how to use election data to improve the voter experience.
Jan 09 , 2018
The EAC will host an all-day summit highlighting a spectrum of issues that state and local election officials will face as they work to administer secure, accessible and efficient federal elections in the coming year. Expert speakers and panelists will discuss critical issues, such as election security, voting accessibility, and how to use election data to improve the voter experience.
Oct 30 , 2017
Colorado is pioneering a new method of auditing elections known as a risk-limiting audit (RLA) that improves the integrity of the election process and sets the standard for other local and state election officials to follow. The promise of this effort can be attributed to a six-year collaboration between state and county election officials, voting system providers, subject matter experts, and election advocates.
Jul 11 , 2017
Lynn Ledford, Elections Director, Gwinnett County Board of Voter Registrations and Elections writes about how Gwinnett County is working to improve language access in Georgia.
May 25 , 2017
As our nation recognizes May as Military Appreciation Month, we caught up with Deborah Clark, Supervisor of Elections for Pinellas County Florida, to talk about their “Vote in Honor of a Vet” program. Located on Florida’s west coast, Pinellas County is a 280-square mile peninsula bordered by the Gulf of Mexico and Tampa Bay. The County has nearly 645,000 registered voters.