BOSTON -- Americans Overseas for Kerry (AOK), with financial support from the Democratic National Committee and Democrats Abroad, launched a new domain and overseas voter registration application, OverseasVote2004.com, during the Democratic National Convention in Boston. The new domain and application revolutionize an arcane and complex system of voter registration and absentee ballot requests for US citizens living abroad.
“AOK is providing our worldwide network of volunteers with a tool that will exponentially increase their ability to register greater numbers of overseas voters,” said Diana Kerry, John Kerry’s sister, the founding Chair of AOK. "OverseasVote2004.com will launch in time for US citizens living overseas including dual nationals, citizens who have never lived in the US, and citizens who have never voted or not voted in decades to meet the September 15th deadline to register to vote and request their absentee ballots,” added Ms. Kerry.
AOK is the first organization to take on the challenge of truly automating the overseas voter registration form which US citizens living abroad must fill out in each federal election year regardless of whether they have previously registered to vote. OverseasVote2004.com proves that the process can become easy, fast, and error-free. Industry-standard software technologies have been used to develop this groundbreaking, revolutionary web application, which will enable the millions of US citizens living overseas to register to vote and request their absentee ballots.
estimates ranging between 4 and 7 million Americans living
abroad, this contingent of voters could be a determining
factor in the outcome of the election. They vote wherever
they or their parents last lived in the United States. They
represent potential Kerry-Edwards votes in all 50 states and
the District of Columbia. AOK has been, and continues to be
highly focused on overseas voter registration, working to
US citizens abroad register with assistance. “With the online promotion of this system that we will enact, registering several tens of thousands more voters before the election is now a highly achievable goal,” stated Ms. Kerry.
“AOK has taken an innovative approach to evolve the voter registration process and create a more usable and far-reaching system,” stated James Brenner, Executive Director for AOK. “While OverseasVote2004.com takes care of the broad voter registration objectives, we can now focus more of our attention on another pressing issue, which is making sure the overseas votes are counted.”
“As an AOK voter registration volunteer who has registered hundreds of voters, I know how cumbersome the manual process can be,” says Susan Dzieduszycka-Suinat, Project Manager for OverseasVote2004.com, “So, instead of canonizing a complex system, we developed a logical flow to the required questions and have given it a user-friendly front-end.”
OverseasVote2004.com presents the user with a customized flow of questions for his/her last state of residence. Users are asked only the questions required of them by their state of last residence, and none other. They are automatically given the address for where to send their form, which the system determines for them. The system will even print a customized mailing envelope. All of this together significantly reduces the chances of error in completing the form, and subsequently increases the chance of the local election officials placing the applicant on the electoral rolls.