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TODAY, NOVEMBER 3, as we all recognize, is Election Day. But not just any election day.
Here in California. Wife Dottie and I put our ballots in the mail on October 16. The next day, the Orange County Registrar of Voters sent BallotTrax Notification emails that “Your ballot for the 2020 General Election was received and will be counted. Thank you for voting!”
A sigh of relief. We didn’t have to worry about faux Ballot Drop Boxes. Thank you, California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, for sending a cease-and-desist order to halt use of Republican Party unauthorized boxes, some of which were labeled “official.”
Greg Abbott’s Politicking. Governor Greg Abbott limited each Texas county, regardless of population, to a single Absentee Ballot Drop-Off. Abbott, a Republican, said this is to ensure ballot security. Democrats see it as a means of voter suppression. What’s worse, a U.S. Appeals Court sided with him on the matter.
I’m glad I’m a Californian. My Orange County Voter Information Guide lists three and a half pages of official Ballot Drop Box locations in my county.
Another sigh of relief. Thanks to our county’s BallotTrax Notifications, we know our signatures on the ballot envelopes have been verified by election officials. Wife Dottie’s signature is one of exemplary personalized penmanship, but my scrawl of Simanaitis displays no such consistent talent.
And Thanks, USPS (and the Courts). Judicial challenges questioned U.S. Postal Service “efficiency improvements” enacted by Louis DeJoy, major Trump donor and, earlier this year, appointed U.S. Postmaster General. As reported in The New York Times, October 26, 2020, “The Postal Service is still delivering a significant share of first-class mail late, slowing letters, bills and postcards around the country, months after the delays attracted the attention of the public and Congress. But with Election Day only a week away, limited data about official election mail shows that delivery of ballots is more likely to be on time.”
Patience is Called For. With huge numbers of mail-in ballots expected nationally (some counted upon receipt, others not until the close of balloting today, still others when received later), these tallies will not be quick in certification.
The New York Times offers “How Long Will Vote Counting Take? Estimates and Deadlines in All 50 States.” Note the variety of practices, some from county to county.
One scenario could be a Red Wave of Trump supporters voting in person, followed by a Blue Surge as mail-in ballots are counted.
Another scenario could be a landslide for one or the other candidate, thus sewing up an Electoral College victory while the night is still young.
A lamentable scenario would be protracted legal hassles, complicated by Republican hypocrisy of Amy Coney Barrett’s Supreme Court appointment, and fueled by Trump’s avowed reluctance to accept results.
As (honorary American) Winston Churchill said on November 10, 1942, “Now this is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning.”
And, wherever you might be in the United States, regardless of your presidential preference, please do have your preference counted by voting. ds
© Dennis Simanaitis, SimanaitisSays.com, 2020