Harrisburg, PA – Governor Tom Wolf and Secretary of State Pedro A. Cortés announced today that 100,000 more new applicants used the state’s online voter registration (OVR) than applied with the traditional paper form in 2016.
“OVR has made registration convenient, accurate and secure,” Governor Wolf said. “It just made sense that online registration should be the first step as we began our work to bring about much needed election reforms.”
Secretary Cortés added that OVR is a hit with the public, attracting 5,000 users in its first week and more than 950,000 since its launch in August 2015.
“Encouraging voter participation is one of the most important things I do as secretary of the commonwealth,” Secretary Cortés said. “With more than 858,000 users in 2016 alone, it is clear that Pennsylvania citizens recognize and welcome the ease of OVR.”
The 2016 annual voter registration report (PDF) shows there were 8,646,238 registered voters as of Dec. 31, 2016, compared to 8,098,304 at the end of 2015.
Secretary Cortés also commended the election offices in Pennsylvania’s 67 counties for their efforts to process voter registration applications, both electronic and paper.
“It was a very busy year for election workers in every county,” he said. “They put forth great effort and successfully handled the challenge that comes with every presidential election.”
The annual report, in addition to county and party breakdowns, also provides details of voter list maintenance activities during 2016 and outlines the department’s collaboration with other commonwealth agencies designated under the National Voter Registration Act of 1993 (NVRA).