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College Students Protest Voter Residency Bill At N.H. State House

Robert Garrova for NHPR
Protesters eneter the State House calling on Gov. Sununu to veto voter residency bill

Governor Sununu signed a controversial voter residency bill into law Friday. Before that, dozens of protestors visited his office to ask him to veto the measure.

House Bill 1264 adds more restrictions to voting requirements and cleared the legislature earlier this year.

Opponents say the measure's stricter residency provisions -- like having a driver's license or car registration -- would make it more difficult for college students to vote.


Credit Robert Garrova for NHPR
Protesters gather at the State House to ask Gov. Sununu to veto controversial voter residency bill

Dozens of young voters rallied wearing duct tape over their mouths with the words "Silenced by Sununu" written on it.

Emily Provencher is a junior at Saint Anselm College. She says she doesn't have a New Hampshire driver's license and that the law would affect her ability to vote.

"I've talked to other students who are furious about this,” Provencher says. “Saint A’s is majority out-of-state students and we're also politically active, so we enjoy being able to get involved in New Hampshire politics."

Organizers at the rally said the bill would be a motivator for young voters in 2018.

Sarah Guggenheimer with the New Hampshire Democratic Party says the passing of the bill will raise the stakes in 2018 elections.

"You know, we're hopeful that young people will be motivated by this and come out to vote in really high numbers to reject the policies of Governor Sununu,” Guggenheimer says.

A Supreme Court decision earlier this week found the measure to be constitutionally sound.

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