U-B right; voting rights above partisan politics

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The Union-Bulletin’s editorial about partisan politics having no place regarding voter registration is correct.

The political left doesn’t want any checks regarding the integrity of the voter registration rolls.

When I decided to require an identification to put a person on our statewide voter registration system, I was sued by the left wing Brennan Center in New York City for “voter suppression.”

I simply wanted to make sure there was a real person — since we allow registration by mail and online voter registration.

After losing at the federal district court level, we prevailed. The left has also blocked efforts to be able to verify citizenship. Additionally, I had some unreasonable opposition when we adopted a voter identification requirement for our polling places.

The political right is obsessed with the inaccurate notion that there are huge numbers of illegals and other ineligible people on the voter registration rolls.

It wants to make it harder for people to participate — by creating more hoops.

I always argued that we want our American citizens to be involved in our elections. That’s a basic premise of our democratic republic.

I had a fight from the right when I proposed making the pathway to voting rights clearer and more understandable for ex-felons who have served their time.

My position is that we want them to become good, engaged citizens in their communities.

Again, despite their opposition, we finally prevailed.

The fundamental right of our citizens to participate in the political process needs to be above playing partisan politics.

Sam Reed

Washington secretary of state, 2001-2013

Olympia

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