Pandemic era calls for more absentee voting. However, the States-conducted primary elections suffered because of absentee ballot crisis pointing towards a bigger problem if this were to continue in November as well.
With only five months to go before the Presidential Elections in November, the States look under-prepared for the unprecedented number of absentee voters. Washington DC, Wisconsin, Georgia all registered massive requests for mail-in voting owing to the pandemic. Maryland was supposed to send all registered voters ballots via mail. However, 5% of those, which is about 160,000 ballots, didn’t even reach the voters.
If this glaring loophole is not mended, the fall elections could trigger a major constitutional crisis. The States had initiated a process to expand absentee voting before the primaries. However, explicit logistical issues have cropped up in its execution, which needs to be addressed soon.
Even if 1% of absentee ballots aren’t delivered in crucial states this November, it could tip the scales majorly.
The States also need to address the issue of massive surges in demand for mail-in voting. Most states are overwhelmed by the huge amount of requests for absentee voting. In states like Georgia, around 800,000 voters had requested absentee ballots, 83% in Rhode Island, an estimate of 74% voters in Wisconsin, and so on.
Additionally, Maryland voters went for all-mail voting altogether. However, voters describe the process of requesting for absentee voting “the most frustrating.” Voters also voiced their frustration saying, “You just don’t think something like this could happen in a country like America.”
Image Credits: Elijah Nouvelage