By John C. Fortier
Americans as soon as collected at the first Tuesday after the 1st Monday in November to choose the nation's leaders. Election Day used to be an afternoon of civic engagement whilst pals met on the polls after which forged their ballots. some time past twenty-five years, even though, the US has gone through a revolution in vote casting not like something it has skilled within the first two hundred years of its heritage. we now have created a procedure of many mini-election-days best as much as the most event.
Today approximately 1 / 4 of usa citizens vote earlier than Election Day, both through absentee poll or at early balloting areas. In 1980, just one in twenty citizens voted ahead of Election Day. What has occurred? Has the ease of absentee or early vote casting compromised the integrity of the method and weakened a unifying civic experience?
In Absentee and Early balloting: tendencies, delivers, and Perils, John Fortier records the dramatic elevate in absentee balloting and, extra lately, the meteoric upward thrust in early balloting. He examines the felony and ancient purposes for alterations within the balloting approach and the numerous variations throughout states. Fortier bargains his concepts approximately what the adjustments have intended for the rustic and the place we must always move from right here.
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Additional info for Absentee and Early Voting
Vermont and Maine are the only northeastern states not on this list. Some midwestern states, such as Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Minnesota, Missouri, and Kentucky, are low-absentee states, as are a few states in the Deep South: Alabama, Louisiana, South Carolina, and Mississippi. The only western state on the list is Utah. 9 percent of ballots cast. 3 percent of absentee ballots. 5 percent. They also cast less than 1 percent of the nation’s in-person early votes. Even though absentee and early voting have increased significantly, this very large group of states has not followed that trend.
In most states, voters were asked to provide an acceptable reason for voting absentee, and they were expected to go before a notary public with a blank ballot and then proceed to fill it out—not so the notary could see a voter’s choices, but rather could attest to the fact that the ballot had been cast freely. The notary might also be able to weed out someone who would impersonate another voter, or seek to cast a ballot for a dead or nonexistent person. Today, the motivation to remove obstacles to voting is often not balanced with concerns about the integrity of the ballot, the protection of the secret ballot, and other goods that derive from voting at an election-day polling place.
For them these were just inconveniences, not obstacles to voting. Finally, one recent study shows that early voting in particular is used by those for whom convenience is especially important: voters who are politically sophisticated, and who live at the fringes of large cities. They are savvy enough to know that early voting is an alternative to election-day voting, and harried enough with their commutes and busy lives to want to take advantage of it. 31 Given the large percentage of nonvoters who cite inconvenience as a reason for not voting, it is understandable why some advocates of absentee and early voting believe these methods will increase turnout.
Absentee and Early Voting by John C. Fortier