Online voter registration may have done more than simply lengthen voter rolls -- it also seems to have boosted turnout on election day in California, according to new data released Friday.
Political Data Inc. has been crunching the numbers from the Nov. 6 election, and found that voter turnout was higher among Californians who registered online.
For example, in Sacramento County, turnout for online registrants was 84.7%, 10 points higher than the county average. There was a similar gap in Orange County, and an even wider difference in Fresno County.
[Updated 11:25 a.m.: Political Data Inc. collected the data directly from county officials, who identified which voters registered online, according to the company's vice president, Paul Mitchell.]
The numbers were released by Sen. Leland Yee (D-San Francisco), who wrote the bill allowing Californians to register to vote online.
“I could not be more pleased with the results of online voter registration,” Yee said in a statement. “The numbers are overwhelming."
Yee is hoping his election-related legislation will slingshot him into the California secretary of state's office -- he plans to run for the position in 2014 when incumbent Debra Bowen leaves because of term limits.
-- Chris Megerian in Sacramento
Photo: Voters cast their ballots as swimmers take laps at Echo Park pool on election day in Los Angeles. Credit: Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles Times