Both houses of the Missouri Legislature have now approved a resolution to put an amendment on the ballot that would allow early voting. Upon voter approval, the proposed constitutional amendment would require, beginning with the 2016 general election, the establishment of an early voting period from the third Saturday until the Tuesday prior to Election Day, excluding Sundays, for any election for federal or statewide officials.
Missouri’s chief elections officers said House Joint Resolution 90 is the wrong way to do the right thing. “I was encouraged when the legislature finally began to consider providing eligible Missourians with a more convenient way to exercise their constitutional right to vote,” Kander said. “Unfortunately, it appears the legislative push for early voting was nothing more than a political game. By eliminating weekends and shortening the early voting period, the legislature has shown Missourians that this bill is simply a political strategy to counteract the citizen-driven early voting initiative petition.”
On Tuesday, the group Missouri Jobs with Justice and its partners turned in 300,000 signatures for the Early Voting ballot initiative to the Secretary of State’s office. Missouri could join 35 others states who already have some form of Early Voting, allowing voting on more than just one day.
Both the initiative proposal and the measure approved by the legislature could wind up on the November ballot. If that happens, the measure getting the highest percentage of voter support would become law.