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The Difference Between Absentee and Mail-In Ballots

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As voters prepare to make their voices heard on Election Day, during a pandemic, the news cycle is full of debates about voter fraud and the merits of voting by mail. The terms ‘absentee ballot’ and ‘mail-in ballot’ keep getting tossed around seemingly interchangeably. There is, however, a key difference.

Every U.S. state allows absentee voting, that is, if you cannot physically go to your polling location in person on Election Day, a ballot is sent to you via the mail. Typically, several states require an explanation be given for why you can’t vote in-person.

Historically. these ballots were only available for military personnel and American citizens overseas, those out of town, or those who are ill, according to CNET. These ballots are now widely used across the nation.

Due to the pandemic, 35 states have changed their absentee voting policies to allow anyone to apply for one, hoping to lessen the spread of the virus.

Some states have deemed this “no-excuse absentee voting,” meaning a voter doesn’t have to give an explanation this cycle, but they do still have to apply for the ballot.

Some states are sending applications for absentee ballots out to all voters, these request-forms have been mistaken as mail-in ballots across social media. as reported by CNET. While this promotes widespread voting through the mail, it is not a “mail-in ballot.”

Mail-in ballots are sent to every eligible voter in the state, without any request or explanation needed. Several states including California and Washington are sending legitimate ballots to every voter in the state whether or not they are wanted. Other terms for this are “all-mail voting” and “universal vote by mail.”

This term can mean different things in various states. “Mail-in voting” can mean no-excuse absentee voting or it can mean universal vote by mail. To be sure of your state’s planned method, check with your state’s Board of Elections.

Other methods to cast a vote include early voting, which is an in-person option as select polling locations or good-old voting in-person on Election Day.

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Elections

Biden’s Poor Polling and Harris’ Low Electability Rating Could Have Democrats Considering ‘Nuclear Option’

Behind-the-scenes discussion of how Democrats could arrive at a third option for the next election is underway

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Biden Kamala
Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

With polls consistently showing a poor approval rating for President Joe Biden at below 40 percent, and a recent poll put Kamala Harris’ electability at only 28 percent, Democrats are in full panic mode.

Behind-the-scenes discussion of how Democrats could arrive at a third option for the next election is underway. Operatives are preparing for the possibility of a contested presidential primary in which other would-be nominees take on Ms. Harris, but that could be damaging for the party” reports the Telegraph.

Therefore, Democrats are allegedly whispering about a potential “nuclear option” that would call for current Vice President Harris to be nominated to the Supreme Court. The Telegraph writes that “while the scenario is highly improbable, and perhaps a reflection of a Washington rumor mill in overdrive, the fact it has come up at all shows the depths of the predicament the Biden administration currently finds itself in, amid rising inflation, a stalled domestic agenda, and foreign policy disasters.”

The theory in question would call for President Biden to nominate Harris to the Supreme Court in the event a seat opens in the next three years during his administration. Biden could then use “Section 2 of the 25thAmendment to nominate a more popular vice president”, adds the Telegraph.

Under Section 1 of the 25th Amendment, that new vice president could assume the presidency if Biden were to step down while president. They would then become the Democratic nominee in the 2024 presidential election. That same individual could also be the presumptive Democratic nominee in 2024 if Biden chooses not to run for re-election.

One piece of information that is wetting Democrats’ whistle is that current Supreme Court Justice Breyer has said he does not “want to stay on the Supreme Court until I die.”

The Telegraph notes that “the discussion over potential successors to Mr. Biden is highly unusual less than a year into an administration.”

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