PROVIDENCE – Aquidneck Island businessman and Democratic candidate for Secretary of
State Guillaume De Ramel applauded President Obama’s call to minimize the
time voters spend waiting to cast ballots.
Obama, citing the results of a bipartisan Presidential Commission on Election Administration that he convened to
address challenges voters faced casting ballots in 2012, said “Citizenship means
standing up for everyone’s right to vote. Last year, part of the Voting Rights Act
was weakened but conservative Republicans and liberal Democrats are working together
to strengthen it. And the bipartisan commission I appointed chaired by my campaign
lawyer and Governor Romney’s campaign lawyer has offered reforms so that no one has
to wait more than a half hour to vote. Let’s support these efforts.”
“Rhode Island voters deserve to cast ballots unencumbered by long lines, misplaced
registrations or any other barriers to exercising their Constitutional right to
vote,” said Guillaume. “I applaud the President’s leadership in convening a
bipartisan commission to investigate problems that arose during the 2012 elections.
Republicans, Democrats and unaffiliated voters in Rhode Island all have the right to
cast ballots and make their voices heard, and to do so, as the Commission states and
the President reiterated, in less than 30 minutes. I look forward to meeting
with Rhode Islanders to explore incorporating solutions such as online voter
registration, early voting and using technology to improve the voting conditions for
all of our eligible voters.”
As a candidate for Secretary of State in 2006, Guillaume played a leadership role,
along with Representative Ed Pacheco, to introduce legislation allowing 16 and
17-year-olds to preregister to vote that is today the law in Rhode Island. On April
19, 2006, the Providence Journal reported that, “a bill introduced [by Pacheco] at
the behest of Guillaume de Ramel, Democratic candidate for Secretary of State, would
allow 17-year-olds to register as long as they will turn 18 before the next election.
And it would allow 16-year-olds to ‘preregister’ so their registration automatically
becomes active when they turn 18.”
Current Rhode Island Secretary of State, A. Ralph Mollis, is term-limited from
seeking re-election to the same office in 2014.