By The Bakersfield Californian
Now that the California vote is officially certified, it's time to recognize one of the biggest successes of this election season: online voter registration.
The California secretary of state's office launched Web-enabled registration in October, just 45 days ahead of the deadline to register for the November election. In that short time, nearly 1 million people registered, 60 percent of them online, the other 40 percent on paper.
Some data indicate that online registration may have boosted voter turnout. The Los Angeles Times reported that turnout among voters who registered online in Sacramento County was nearly 85 percent, 10 points higher than the county average. Orange and Fresno counties had similar results.
Secretary of State Debra Bowen drew justifiable criticism over the pace of this rollout. But the job is done and the evidence shows it was effective. She and county election officials throughout the state are to be commended.