By Laura Vozzella,
RICHMOND — Gov. Terry McAuliffe will ask a federal judge to extend the state’s voter registration deadline following a computer crash that prevented some Virginians from signing up this week.
“Let’s let them get in to vote,” McAuliffe (D) said. “I think it’s a great thing for democracy.”
McAuliffe made the comment one day after a civil-rights group filed a lawsuit to extend the deadline, arguing that the state’s technological failures should not deprive citizens of their right to vote.
A breakdown of the state’s online voter registration system Sunday and Monday kept citizens from signing up before the deadline, which was 11:59 p.m. Monday. Administration officials had initially said their hands were tied because the deadline was set in state code.
The number of Virginians who were prevented from registering was unknown because the system did not keep a record of those who were unable to complete the task. But one local registrar estimated it was in the “tens of thousands.”
On Wednesday, McAuliffe said he agreed that the deadline should be extended and would ask the federal judge presiding over the case to order him to take that action, since he doesn’t have the authority otherwise.
“I have asked the attorney general to reach out and hopefully they can do an expedited review,” McAuliffe said.