In These Times - October 8, 2020
We can best safeguard our democracy this November by utilizing early voting and, if necessary, showing up to vote with our masks, in as many battleground states as possible. The United States has reached such a perilous state that this simple act has become heroic.
Joe Biden and the Democrats are walking into a trap in the key battleground states that will decide the upcoming presidential race, as well as key Senate elections. That trap is called “vote by mail” or “absentee voting.”
In normal times, I am a proponent of having a vote by mail option. But these are not normal times. For the November 3 election, it makes much more sense to promote “early voting” in battleground states rather than vote by mail. If they want to be sure that their votes will count, able-bodied voters in competitive races should not mail in their ballots. Instead, they need to show up in person to vote, either before or on Election Day. Despite the dangers of the pandemic, voters who do not have a compromised immune system need to do the heroic act of standing in line with their masks on, just like we stand in line at the grocery store.
The fact is, even if there was no whiff of electoral fraud in the air, vote by mail has led to the loss of millions of ballots due to errors on the part of the voters, election administrators and the postal service. Democratic voters, especially minority voters and young people, are disproportionately hurt. The data is overwhelmingly clear on this, yet Democrats are ignoring it at their peril.
In the recent New York primary elections, tens of thousands of mailed ballots were never counted due to bureaucratic mistakes. Some ballots were postmarked after the election or never postmarked at all by the postal service, making them invalid under state law. Others were disqualified because voters didn’t sign on an easy-to-miss signature line on the back of the ballot envelope. Another 32,000 absentee ballots were mailed to voters so late that they couldn’t return them in time to be counted. Just in New York City’s Democratic presidential primary, over 400,000 mail-in ballots were received, but election officials invalidated more than 84,000 — over a fifth of those ballots. ...
Read full report at In These Times