Sarah Daley: Let’s make it easier, not harder, to vote
As Ms. McLaughlin stated in her recent column about voting by mail, “Absentee ballots are essential for those who are unable to appear at their polling places due to health concerns.” Given that we are in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, I am sure she would agree that all Americans need to vote by mail in this upcoming election.
Polling places are not safe for Americans to vote now no matter how many precautions each voter and polling volunteer might take. Historically most Americans do not participate in their right to vote as it is. Given this pandemic even more Americans will not vote unless we allow them to vote by mail.
Voting by mail is becoming increasingly popular. Right now 22 states allow their citizens to vote by mail. For security purposes, the clerks match each signature on the ballot to the one in their register in order to confirm that the person who voted is actually the same person. When there is a mismatch the clerks call in the person to investigate the matter. End of story.
Instead of creating barriers to voting, we should be finding ways in which to make it easier for Americans to vote. Sadly, this is not what we are doing. Since the Supreme Court’s 5-4 ruling in Shelby County v. Holder, many states are making it harder for African Americans to vote. According to Kristen Clarke, president and executive director of the National Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, “efforts to suppress the voting rights of African Americans have intensified … we’ve literally seen rampant voter suppression efforts overtake parts of the country within the last several years.”
Ms. McLaughlin’s concern about voting by mail is ill-founded since widespread fraud does not exist. Her efforts to make mail-in-ballots appear fraudulent will only contribute to Trump’s efforts to discredit the 2020 election if he loses. This is, of course, ironic since Trump himself votes by mail.
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