One state governor has just announced his plan for keeping the polls open during this time of the coronavirus, and it has Republicans furious.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) signed an order on Friday for the state’s Board of Elections to provide all state residents with a postage-paid absentee ballot application in time for the June primary election.
It’s up to you . . .
Among the myriad of problems brought about by the coronavirus is that of voting without spreading the disease. This is why Democrats, like Cuomo, are turning to options that would essentially allow everyone to vote from home.
Earlier this month, the New York governor signed an executive order that would allow his state’s residents to decide between showing up at the polls or voting via absentee ballot. Friday’s announcement — that all voters will be provided with pre-paid absentee ballot applications — is in furtherance of this order.
“Life is options,” Cuomo said during a press briefing yesterday. “There’s only two options. People can either go to the polls or vote by absentee. We’re doing both.”
In states like New York, absentee voting is normally only allowed in certain situations, such as by a military member serving outside of the country. This order would extend that ability to all of New York’s roughly 12 million active voters this June.
Cuomo sought to justify the move by explaining that it would get rid of the fears people have about “waiting in line and having contact with other people” who might have the coronavirus.
. . . Or is it?
Expanding absentee voting has received much criticism from Republicans, including President Donald Trump, who say the risk of voter fraud increases along with it.
“I think a lot of people cheat with mail-in voting,” Trump recently said. “It should be, you go to a booth, and you probably display yourself. You don’t send it in the mail where people pick up all sorts of bad things can happen by the time they sign that, if they sign that, if they sign that, by the time it gets and is tabulated. No. It should not be mailed-in.”
Be that as it may, New York is among several states to have turned to this option for their upcoming primaries.
At the moment, this may not be that big of a deal. Former Vice President Joe Biden seems to be his party’s pick for this November’s general election, now that Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) has dropped out of the race.
Allowing nationwide mail-in ballots for the general election would be another issue entirely.