Since 2008 Indiana has improved its election performance, but it still lags behind most of other states. That’s according to a report the Pew Charitable Trusts released this week.
The study shows Indiana’s biggest improvements include allowing online voter registration, shrinking wait times, and decreasing the number of ballots that were sent to voters overseas but were not returned.
Although Indiana’s voter registration rate has dropped almost 30 percent since 2008, Pew’s election initiatives project research manager Sean Greene says that could be a trend Indiana can’t control.
“The voter registration rate, it went down a little more, but these are things that we are seeing across the country,” he said.
Indiana is one of only 13 states that allow online voter registration and Indiana Secretary of State’s spokeswoman Valerie Kroeger says the study proves adding online registration in 2010 was the right strategy for Indiana.
“They do everything from their smartphone now,” she said, “they can even register to vote online, making it easier, so Hoosiers have access to that right.”
But Indiana still fared poorly compared with other states. Pew ranked it 30th on overall election performance for 2012.
One of the improvements the study suggests is that the state conducts a postelection audit to assess the performance of voting equipment. Kroeger says the secretary of state’s office is already working on that for this year’s general election.
“We are going to continue to work for audits, and hopefully we will have that all taken care of by the time Pew does their next Election Index report,” she said.