Better vote early–the rules keep changing! Watch out for voter fraud! Bring every available form of identification you have to be sure you will be allowed to vote!
These are the kinds of warnings we are hearing and reading in every media outlet as Election Day approaches.
The message boils down to: Voter Beware.
We have reached a truly sad state of hyper-partisanship in our political world. As the League of Women Voters reminds us: we should be encouraging and enabling
people to vote, not fortifying our polling places and challenging our citizens’ right to vote. The list of new voting laws and the constant stream of regulation interpretation
raining down on us from our local and state Boards of Elections is honestly daunting. I have no doubt that this maze will seem impenetrable to some who will just stay away
from the polls. The threatening and punitive tone of these messages adds to the already heavy atmosphere of voter intimidation.
I find it very hard to understand how the very people we have elected by casting our votes for them, can so loudly and publicly proclaim their distrust of the authenticity
of voters and the legitimacy of elections. I guess this is the “I trust my voters, but not all the rest of them” syndrome (like the ‘my school is great. It’s all those other
schools that are failing’ syndrome). What makes the current lawmakers think that they are immune to the damages of polling place fortification?
I do not support the restrictive and discriminatory changes in our voting laws, and I fought long and hard against their passage in Richmond. Even though it is more
and more difficult in many states, I still believe that we all must cast our ballots. Voting is both a responsibility and a right–no matter how many barriers are in the way.
The voting-restriction-law bullies have to be proven wrong. Americans have fought for the freedom to vote and are not going to be stopped now.
Here are a few points to remember before you do vote:
• your voting district may have changed;
• Your polling place may have changed;
• the actual address of your polling place (new or old) is not on your voter registration card;
• your name on your ID must exactly match your name on your voter registration card; recognition by an election officer is no longer proof of identity;
• you must check in at the pollbook station even if you do not have proper ID and will need to cast a provisional ballot. Walking directly to the provisional ballot table is illegal.
• if you know anyone who is voting absentee by mail, warn that voter to carefully check the new regulations describing specifically how to fill out the ballot and particularly, how to fill out the ballot envelope. Failure to obey the regulations will disqualify that absentee vote.
Confused? Go to VOTE411. org, courtesy of the League of Women Voters.
I will see you at the polls.
Delegate Kory represents the 38th District in the Virginia House of Delegates. She may be emailed at [email protected].