Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Vote Early and Often

I did the early voting thing this morning. Did the same thing last presidential election and was very glad because the lines in Colorado were hours long on election day and many didn't even get to vote. This year 57% have opted for mail-in ballots so hopefully things will go a bit smoother on election day. I don't trust the mail-in ballots and sure enough there was a guy at the polling place this morning who claimed he never got his. They were going to do something for him so he could vote but it sounded like it was going to be a big hassle. The polling place was busy but I didn't have to wait and aside from the nuisance of having to fill in every little box with a pen that didn't work so well it was no problem. I miss the old voting machines where you punch a card. I know, hanging chad and all that but still it was so much easier and quicker. I read all the ammendments and filled out the cheat sheet they give you beforehand otherwise it would have taken forever. Still it took about 15 minutes to fill in all the boxes by hand. There was a computer option but I don't trust those either. Supposedly last presidential election there was a big problem with them and I don't trust that they've fixed it. Old school pain in the ass paper ballot in person for me.

My grandmother is big on voting, I turned 18 about a week or so before I left for college and she nagged me incessantly to register to vote and get an absentee ballot before I left. It was a pain in the ass with all else I had to do to get ready to go but I did it and was probably the only person on my dorm floor to vote in that election. You know those little old ladies that give you your ballot on election day? She was one of them. She can't do it anymore but she did it way past when she probably should have. It's a long and exhausting day for those little old ladies and they are volunteers so be extra nice to them when they give you your ballot.

Being the voting fanatic that she is she's trying to get my grandfather out to the polls this year to vote. Trouble is he's pushing 91 and has Alzheimer's. He has no idea who Obama and McCain are and even if you were game enough to explain it to him it would fly right out of head just moments after it went in. I'm not even sure he's capable of filling out a ballot. Some states will not allow you to vote if you've been declared mentally incompetent by a judge. Other states don't care. Not sure about the one he lives in and anyway who in the family is going to go to the bother to have him declared mentally incompetent never mind how badly this would upset my grandmother? I have to wonder how many people out there are 'voting' and have no idea who for or why never mind all the old folks in nursing homes and mental facilities who's caregivers are voting for them by mail. I suppose no system is perfect and we have to do the best with the one we've got. Better to let a few votes slip through the cracks than to be too strict and take voting rights away from people who might really be competent or are borderline. Too much grey area there I guess. Though I suppose it goes a long way towards explaining the last 8 years if the problem is more rampant than I think.

Happy voting people.

3 comments:

  1. Roxanne9:31 AM

    Good for you!

    I'm a HUGE voting Geek. I remember getting absentee ballots in college, back when it was a major pain and you had to have your ballot notarized.

    We voted via mail-in ballot already. But, I'm squeamish about the post office, so I hand delivered our ballots to the county clerk. Still ... it took 5 days for the online system to show our ballots had been received and processed.

    In our county, they say something like 70-75% of people are voting by mail this time, which is great.

    Once I finish my Oct deadlines, then I'll be all-election, all the time, including volunteering all day on Nov 4 with Get Out the Vote efforts.

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  2. I've filled out my absentee ballot. Now to get around to mailing it...

    I really hope we are going to see record turnout this year.

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  3. Kudos to you!
    I actually filled out a ballot and i was ready to send it in!
    I know that not enough people in our country vote. Therefore i make sure everyone who is at the age of voting in our family votes.

    I believe it is the future of our country. Additionally it is our responsibility as citizens. to vote.

    Wonderful post! Thank you for posting about this!

    -Peggy

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