LETTER: General election

Randolph Oberlin

To the editor:

I encourage all eligible voters to get registered and vote. I urge county officials to make the courthouse easily accessible to all who want to vote early. If additional people are needed to help manage the number of expected in-person early votes, then they should ask for help. I would be glad to help out part-time in that effort.

Same applies to Election Day. If more poll workers are needed, now is the time to put out the call. I have tested negative for the virus and would have no issue working the polls, counting mail-in ballots or any other election-related task. The county wouldn’t even have to pay – glad to do it as a civic duty.

All that said, here are several other comments. When was the last time the voter list was purged? In 2019, there were 685 deaths reported. Have all those names been taken off the rolls? Same applies to the approximately 300 who have died in the first six months of the year. Did any of these individuals receive the forms to request a mail-in ballot? Did any of them request a ballot for the recent primary?

The county mailed out the request forms to all registered voters. That was great. Really should be no need to request another form unless you are newly registered or have lost the first one. Third party organizations mailing out forms with your name already entered is unnecessary and confusing. The deadline for requesting a mail-in ballot is Oct. 27. One could assume that on Oct. 28, the county would know exactly how many mail-in ballots were requested and mailed. So if during the election more mail-in ballots are received than were requested, one might suspect some funny business.

Kudos to the county for putting out the boxes for collecting the mail-in ballots separate from the postal system. My question is, when will the last collection from those boxes be made? If the in-person voting polls close at 7 p.m., then the last collection should be no later than 8 p.m. Any ballots deposited later than that should not be counted. You can’t go to your polling place after it has closed and ask to vote, so apply the same rules to those county collection boxes.

Ballots sent by USPS have to postmarked no later than Nov. 3 to be valid. These ballots must arrive at the county clerk’s office by Nov. 6 (I think that is correct) to be counted.

Finally there is no reason why you can’t vote in person. Advance voting starts two weeks before Election Day. That’s plenty of time for all those who are paralyzed by the fake pandemic to avoid lines at the polling places. The number of new cases in the county continues to drop and we still have nearly 60 days to go. If you can go to Walmart or grocery shopping you can go vote in person as it should be.

The integrity of our elections must be preserved at all costs. Proper checks must be in place to ensure that only those registered to vote are allowed to vote and that the vote counting is honest, accurate and timely.