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By John C. Fortier

Americans as soon as accumulated 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. long ago twenty-five years, notwithstanding, the US has passed through a revolution in vote casting not like something it has skilled within the first two hundred years of its background. we now have created a procedure of many mini-election-days prime as much as the most event.

Today approximately 1 / 4 of american citizens vote sooner than Election Day, both via absentee poll or at early vote casting areas. In 1980, just one in twenty electorate voted ahead of Election Day. What has occurred? Has the benefit 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 files the dramatic raise in absentee balloting and, extra lately, the meteoric upward thrust in early vote casting. He examines the felony and ancient purposes for adjustments within the vote casting process and the various modifications throughout states. Fortier bargains his suggestions approximately what the adjustments have intended for the rustic and the place we must always pass from the following.

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Extra resources for Absentee and Early Voting

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Oregon has held all of its elections by an allmail ballot since 1998. Washington casts nearly 70 percent of its votes absentee. Another three states, Arizona, California, and Iowa, top 30 percent. The remaining states in this category cluster around 20 percent. 1% SOURCE: Author’s calculations. 5 percent). Of the eleven states in category 2, seven are in the West, and three Great Plains states are represented. Vermont is the only eastern state, and there are none from the South. S. 1 percent of the nation’s absentee ballots.

When the state conducted a referendum on building a new football stadium in Seattle in 1997, 27 of the state’s 39 counties conducted the entire election by mail. The results were stunning: for example, in Pacific County, which used polling stations only, 39 percent of registered voters turned out; adjacent Wahkiakum County, which used vote-by-mail, had a 62 percent turnout. We’ve also found that vote-by-mail dramatically increases turnout in national elections during the offPresidential years when voters’ interest tends to drop.

Today, almost every eligible American has an opportunity to vote, but reformers worry that there are obstacles to voting—not insurmountable ones, but discouragements nonetheless. Why not, say reformers, make voting easier for the elderly, the busy single working mom, or the person living in a rural area far from a polling station? It is tempting to say that the motivations of the early reformers were superior to and of a wholly different kind than those of today’s advocates of preelection voting.

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