With limits and restrictions on voter rights comes the demise of true democracy. Our state has already seen the inauguration of a governor who captured vastly less than a majority vote and has systematically pushed an agenda which exclusively benefits corporate interests rather than the good of the many.

While Maine’s majority is under-, un- and nervously employed, Gov. LePage and other Republicans have wasted time focusing on things like eliminating same-day voter registration. Energy that might have been better spent on job creation went to taking away a 38-year tradition that has been the cause of absolutely no legitimate problems.

Without same-day voter registration, political and corporate groups will have fewer obstacles to predict (read control) elections, so it makes sense that it would be in their best interest. But what’s in the best interest of Maine voters?

I like the convenience of registering on the same day I vote. But more important, when my rights as a voter are infringed upon, it makes me worry about the future of our democracy, which is increasingly starting to function as an oligarchy. For this concerned citizen, a “yes” vote on Question 1 is a vote for democracy.

Michelle Leier

Cape Elizabeth

Registration on Election Day is a bad idea. Why? There are five days in every week when one can register to vote, so go register.

Those who argue for voting and registering on the same day are doing so for a reason. I believe that reason is to bring in busloads of “citizens” who may or may not eligible to vote for various reasons. Maybe they aren’t really citizens or maybe they are just attending college here. Some of them may have voted absentee in their own state already. Flooding the poll workers with extra work would be a way to skew the election.

When I turned 21 in March 1962, I waited until my wife reached 21 in August to register. The next day we did register, I paid a $2 poll tax (now ruled illegal), we proved our residency and demonstrated our ability to read. I think those who want same-day registering and voting really want the ability to throw the election.

Please vote “no” against same-day registration and voting. Keep our elections honest. Think it over: If voting is important to you, register now.

John M. Roberts

South Portland

For almost two generations, Mainers have been able to register to vote, and then vote, on Election Day. In effect, since 1973, untold numbers of Mainers, including myself, have registered and voted on Election Day. Suddenly, a Republican-led Legislature, with a party-line vote, has decided for all of us that we have been engaged in fraudulent behavior and it must be stopped.

Somehow, the conservative Republican-led Legislature has decided that leaving your act of voter registration until Election Day is proof that you are ignorant of the issues and candidates and your vote on Election Day is less valuable or worthy than theirs.

This I find is a very insulting statement of one group of Mainers towards another. There are various well-documented reasons why a person has not had an opportunity to register before Election Day — but the total impact of this new law is to tamper with voter participation, especially among those individuals whom conservative Republicans consider less than worthy of the right to vote.

In particular, this new law penalizes hard working people who work long hours during the work week away from a new town of residence. At best, entry-level and hourly wage employees lose pay for taking weekday time off, and, at worst, may lose that job, no matter the validity of the absence.

Recent accusations by conservative GOP Chairman Charlie Webster imply that there is widespread voter fraud. He fails to point out that there are many existing checks and balances in place to prevent it.

His other target: college students. The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that college students with proof of ID and residency can legally vote in their towns of residence. A “yes” vote on Question 1 will protect the voting rights we hold so dear.

Maurie Hill

Standish

I wonder how Secretary of State Charlie Summers defines patriotism (“Vote fraud finds one illegal incident,” Sept. 22). According to Merriam-Webster, it is love for or devotion to one’s country.

I believe that my devotion to my country includes my duty to vote in every election. For 29 years now, whenever I have moved to a new residence, I have registered and voted.

Maine’s secretary of state should not discourage students from registering and voting by branding them as not “patriotic” for registering to vote in the places they go to school.

Like his predecessors, he should be happy that young people are participating in the political process.

Michelle A. Small

Brunswick

Deriding young people by raising convoluted debates about residency, promoting suspicion and paranoia through false accusations about voter fraud and casting a cloud of doubt over our election system is not something we can get behind.

That’s whey we need to vote “yes” on Question 1 this Nov. 8 and protect voting rights for all Mainers.

We need to send a message that this hostile attitude in state government is not productive. We ought to celebrate the fact people want to participate in our communities, not turn them away from the polls.

We have an obligation to hold our lawmakers accountable, and that’s why we helped collect of 70,000 signatures to force this issue on the ballot.

A small number of Maine lawmakers just tried to silence thousands of their constituents and that is not something we can stand by and allow.

Delia Gorham

Program Director, League of Young Voters

Portland

I don’t know about the rest of you, but I waited for Charlie Summers’ press conference on the results of the voter registration fraud probe with bated breath.

Finally an explanation for all of the wacky election results in the People’s Republic of Portland! Not the growing influence of the Green Party, but piles of tainted votes by legions of zombies who, under the direction of their leader on the alien mother ship, registered and voted every year on Election Day. “Gort! Klaatu barada nikto!” But noooo. The distinguished official’s investigation only uncovered one illegal voter. Huh?

Then it dawned on me. The real motivation for Charlie’s massive Votergate probe (that I almost missed): What the honorable secretary was cleverly trying to do was distinguish himself from the rest of the crackpot tea party Republicans by reaching across the aisle on the people’s veto of the voter registration law.

Mission accomplished with this moderate Republican! Charlie’s Big Investigation has convinced me that there really is no problem with Election Day voter registration fraud.

Thanks to his efforts, I’ve done a full 180 on this important issue and now plan to support the people’s veto. I’ll also be looking forward to even bigger and better bipartisan initiatives from Summers as we approach the all-important 2014 elections.

Mike Slavin

Scarborough