AUGUSTA – Governor Paul R. LePage today issued a statement urging college students to establish residency in Maine if they choose to vote in state.
“Democrats for decades have encouraged college students from out of state to vote in Maine, even though there is no way to determine whether these college students also voted in their home states,” Governor LePage said. “Casting ballots in two different states is voter fraud, which is why Maine law requires anyone voting here to establish residency here. We welcome college students establishing residency in our great state, as long as they follow all laws that regulate voting, motor vehicles and taxes. We cannot tolerate voter fraud in our state.”
The law on the Secretary of State’s website is clear:
Eligibility to Register and Vote in Maine
• To be eligible to register to vote in Maine, you must have established and maintain a voting residence in the municipality (i.e. city, town, plantation or unorganized township) where you seek to register.
Consequences of Declaring Your Voting Residence (by Registering to Vote) in Maine
• You should be aware that if you register to vote in Maine, you will be deemed to have declared residency in Maine, which may have consequences for compliance with other Maine laws, including the motor vehicle laws and tax laws.
• If you drive a car in Maine, you are required to obtain a Maine driver’s license within thirty days of establishing residency here. Driving without a Maine license more than ninety days after you have established residency in the state is a crime under Maine law.
• If you are a resident of Maine and own a vehicle here, state law also requires you to register that vehicle in Maine within thirty days of establishing residency. By declaring Maine as your voting residence, you may be treated as a resident of Maine for income tax purposes and be subject to Maine income tax.
• . . . as a student, you must meet the same residency requirements as all other potential voters.
See the complete requirements of the law on the Secretary of State’s website.
“After the election, we will do everything we can that is allowed under state and federal law to verify college students who voted here are following Maine law, which is clearly displayed on the Secretary of State’s website,” said Governor LePage.