Pennsylvania is making the most significant changes to its election laws in 80 years and helping counties buy new voting machines ahead of next year's presidential election.
Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf signed the bill Thursday, two days after it passed the Republican-controlled Legislature handily. The legislation was negotiated privately by Wolf and top Republicans. Wolf says it's taking the nation's least voter-friendly election laws and putting them in line with states that have the highest voter turnout.
It lets any voter mail in a ballot, moves voter-registration deadlines closer to elections and extends the deadline to return absentee ballots. It also authorizes $90 million in borrowing for voting machines that Wolf insisted on to bolster election security.
Meanwhile, it eliminates the ballot option for straight party-ticket voting, a top priority of Republicans.