04/11/2014 11:51 am ET Updated Jun 11, 2014

Improving the Voter Experience

With so many important issues facing the electorate this fall and in 2016, voters have a lot at stake. If recent elections are any indication, we can expect older voters to turn out in droves. We want to make sure that these voters -- indeed, voters of all ages -- have a quality experience and an opportunity to exercise their civic responsibility.

After the long lines and extreme voter frustration from the past couple of presidential elections, people on both sides of the aisle called for change -- which is why President Obama established the Presidential Commission on Elections Administration (PCEA), with a goal to improve the voter experience. Improving the quality of the voter experience is particularly important for older voters -- some of whom have physical and financial limitations that make waiting in long lines difficult (and potentially preclude them from voting at all).

The Commission's recommendations offer practical solutions that range from polling place accessibility, the availability of early voting, and the adoption of user-friendly voting technologies. The Commission report's key recommendations provide a sound basis for improving registration accuracy, expanding access, reducing administrative costs, preventing fraud and irregularities, and limiting long lines at polling places.

AARP commends the Commission's recommendations, which will dramatically increase both voter participation and the efficiency of election administration. And we urge state and local governments to adopt proven modernized voting systems and procedures that encourage and promote maximum participation in the electoral process by expanding the range of voting choices -- including additional and new polling locations, vote-by-mail, early voting, same-day registration and voting, and secure online voting.