Sununu Signs Voter Residency Bill; Legal Challenge Expected

Jul 13, 2018

Credit Dan Tuohy for NHPR

Governor Chris Sununu has signed a bill that eliminates the distinction between "residency" and "domicile" for voting purposes. The move comes a day after the state Supreme Sourt issued a split opinion finding the bill constitutional.

The governor said he sought the court's opinion on the bill to "put the issue to rest once and for all." 

The ruling by the court - three justices Sununu promoted or appointed deemed it constitutional; the other two said it was wrong to consider the bill without a record - isn't likely to do that.

But in a statement, the governor said the bill, which aims to make people like college students who vote here abide by other residency requirements, like getting a drivers license or registering their cars, means "Every person who votes in New Hampshire will be treated the same. This is the essence of an equal right to vote." 

The new law, which is expected to face legal challenge, is slated to take effect next year.