A NBC/Wall Street Journal Poll shows that two thirds of American voters want vote by mail this fall and 58% want the same option in all elections.
NEW: 58% of voters favor nationwide reform of election rules that would allow all eligible voters to cast their ballots by mail, a new @NBCNews /Wall Street Journal poll finds. https://t.co/CaVuXbtIV0 pic.twitter.com/LRwJc9IjSQ— MSNBC (@MSNBC) April 21, 2020
The poll was conducted among 900 registered voters April 13-15 and has a margin of error of 3.27%.
Partisan Differences Over Voting by Mail Support Mail Voting Dem Rep Ind VBM in ALL Elections 82% 31% 61% VBM in 2020 88% 44% 69%
Donald Trump and some Republicans claim absentee or voting by mail leads to large scale cheating, though many Republicans use the method.
States that vote entirely by mail include: Colorado, Hawaii, Oregon, Utah, and Washington.
States that permit counties to opt into conducting all elections by mail:
- California: Any county may conduct any election as an all-mail election following statutory guidelines.
- Nebraska: Any county of less than 10,000 inhabitants may apply to the secretary of state to mail ballots for all elections in lieu of establishing polling places.
- North Dakota: Counties may conduct any election by mail. Applications for mailed ballots are sent to each individual listed on the central voter file (note that North Dakota does not require voter registration ahead of the election) and there must be one or more polling places in the county for voting in the usual manner.
Twelve other states allow mail only elections under certain circumstances.
According to research compiled by the National Vote at Home Institute, 16 states limit the distribution of absentee ballots—which can be mailed or otherwise delivered to the voter’s home—to residents who present a lawful excuse for avoiding in-person voting, such as planned travel or a disability.
Of those states, five—West Virginia, Alabama, Indiana, Delaware and Massachusetts—have already waived these limitations for voters in upcoming primary and statewide elections because of public health concerns over the virus’ spread.
Some state governments are considering changes either temporary or permanent to absentee voting and lawsuits have been filed in some states.
Milwaukee Council to Send All Voters Absentee Applications
All 300,000 registered voters in Milwaukee, Wisconsin will receive an application for an absentee ballot with a postage-paid return envelope this fall after the Milwaukee Common Council voted for the “SafeVote Program”.
The resolution notes thousands of people turned out to vote in person earlier this month in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic that has caused government officials to limit the number of people who can gather under other circumstances. In Milwaukee, some residents reported waiting in line for more than two hours to cast their ballots at the city’s five in-person polling locations.
If Democratic cities led by Milwaukee and (maybe) Madison go all out to promote absentee voting, it would be stupid for Republican areas not to follow suit. It is especially relevant since older voters that tend to vote Republican have more reason to fear the pandemic and stay away from the polls. Such reasons may force the Republican legislature’s hand in making it as easy as possible for all voters to vote safely by mail in November.
(MILWAUKEE) — Officials have identified seven people who appear to have contracted the coronavirus through activities related to the April 7 election in Wisconsin, Milwaukee’s health commissioner said.