NAICU Washington Update

Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi Must Follow Student Voter Registration Rules This Year

September 07, 2011

Three states will have gubernatorial elections this fall: Kentucky, Louisiana and Mississippi.  Federal law requires the colleges in these states to make a good-faith effort to distribute state voter registration forms to each degree or certificate-seeking student who attends classes on campus.

This provision, which applies to both federal and gubernatorial elections was written into law in 1998 as part of the Higher Education Act.  Some aspects of the requirement suffered from being impractical.  NAICU lobbied for and won changes in the 2008 HEA reauthorization, amending the requirement to clarify that e-mail messages with links to the state forms are acceptable.  Note, however, that the e-message must be devoted exclusively to voter registration.

NAICU encourages members to embrace this opportunity to organize campus activities in support of voter education, registration, and civic engagement.  Election Day is November 8, 2011. Voter registration deadlines are usually 30 days prior to the election.  Kentucky, however, has a special deadline of October 11.

For your convenience, we have provided the links to your state boards of elections:


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