Fri | Apr 3, 2020

California won't register to vote those in US illegally

Published:Monday | March 5, 2018 | 12:00 AM

Immigrants living in the US illegally will not automatically be registered to vote in California come April, despite online stories claiming that's the case.

At issue is a California law taking effect in April that will automatically register people to vote when they get a driver's licence, an ID card, or update their address with the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). California allows immigrants living in the country illegally to obtain drivers licences, leading some websites to falsely claim they'll be automatically signed up to vote.

California's new programme has safeguards to ensure only US citizens can go through the voter registration process. A DMV worker processing a drivers' licence application for an undocumented immigrant, for example, will not be able to access the voter registration boxes, which will be greyed out.

"To be eligible, you have to be a US citizen," said Jessica Gonzalez, a DMV spokeswoman.

This is part of The Associated Press' ongoing effort to fact-check misinformation that is shared widely online, including work with Facebook to identify and reduce the circulation of false stories on the platform.