Maryland panel OKs early voting bill

Local,Maryland,Andy Brownfield

ANNAPOLIS -- A Maryland House committee approved a measure Monday to expand early voting in the state and allow same-day registration and in-person voting during the early voting period.

The bill now goes before the full House. The Senate passed its own version March 11.

The measure increases the number of early voting centers throughout the state and expands the number of early voting days from six to eight.

The House Ways and Means Committee amended to bill to require stricter proof of identification when requesting a ballot online, to specify that ballots cannot be transmitted over the Internet and to allow counties to install even more early voting centers than the bill requires, if they choose.

The committee killed amendments that would have required people who registered and voted on the same day use a provisional ballot and that would require the state to make the online ballot request system more secure if an expert found any deficiencies.

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