I voted in another election? It looks like I did anyway.
Very thankfully, I live in California. And without diving too much into a political science debate, I like to think that, even given all the challenges our largest state in the union faces politically, I like to think we all support the idea of early voting. Full disclosure, I’m a native New Yorker. With this comes a frustration and chronic impatience of waiting on lines, whether at a stoplight or at a coffee shop. Early voting removes this frustration of waiting in a queue and allows me the time I need to research my votes from my own home. That said, people express concerns about early voting. For me, the concern has been if my ballot is being received and will be counted. Once again, I am lucky to live in a jurisdiction that allows me to track my ballot with relative ease. This year I signed up to receive text messages as my ballot is tracked through the process. I dropped mine off with the USPS. I wasn’t nervous about it counting, but certainly things can happen and ballots can be lost. Thanks to tech, I can see my vote “for the 2020 General Election was received and will be counted.”
Election Project is a great initiative tracking early voting in the U.S. Not only does it track early mail-in and in-person voting, it provides a run-down of outstanding ballots by party where available and the number of rejected ballots. Good info for those keeping track of the popularity of early voting.
Regarding rejected ballots, I feel there should be an automated system (they have our voter info) that alerts a voter to whether their ballot was rejected, which will give them the opportunity on election day to vote in-person. Other improvements to the voting system can also be improved I’m sure, but I believe the early voting provides the best opportunity for the greatest voter turn-out. Voting should not have to be a single-day sacrificial event. It should be a process, aided by technology, to ensure the highest levels of participation for what is a right as citizens. It makes you wonder what the motives are for those that want to restrict voting rights.