Cuomo Wants 16-Year-Olds to Pre-Register to Vote

ALBANY -

Gov. Andrew Cuomo proposed urging teens as young as 16 to “preregister” to vote as part of a package of election reform aimed at combating voter cynicism.

The governor also would reduce the number of signatures required for a candidate to get on the ballot and extend voter registration deadlines so people can register as few as 10 days before an election. Current law bars registration within 25 days of an election, the Daily News reported.

Cuomo also wants the state’s board of elections to redesign ballots to make them easier to read.

“For too many years, New York State has … been in the Dark Ages when it comes to our process for electing candidates to public office,” Cuomo said in a statement.

But the most ambitious proposal would allow 16-year-olds to sign up to vote at their school or local Department of Motor Vehicles office. They would be automatically registered to vote once they turn 18.

The list of measures must be approved by the legislature first. The proposals came on the same day that the Assembly approved a bill to let voters cast ballots nearly three weeks before an election. The senate still has to vote on that bill.