"California's old voter registration card looked more like an imposing tax form instead of a simple invitation to participate in democracy," said Bowen. "The new card is inviting, it's intuitive, and most of all, it's a visual reminder that registering to vote is quick and easy."
The new layout has about 730 words as opposed to more than 1,200 words on the previous version. In addition, the new card helps eliminate confusion about how to sign up as a nonpartisan voter. Nearly 20 percent of state voters "decline to state" a party preference. However, some voters accidentally registered as a member of the American Independent Party when they intended to register as "independent" of a political party.
The new cards, available in English, Spanish, Chinese, Tagalog, Vietnamese, Korean and Japanese, will be phased in as supplies of the old cards dry up.
The Web-based registration options at www.sos.ca.gov/elections/elections_vr.htm have also been streamlined. The last day to register to vote in the Nov. 4 General Election is Oct. 20.