You did your civic duty and voted early, or will be voting Tuesday Nov 3, but our work, even then, is not yet done. Regardless of your political affiliation it’s important that we let the entire democratic process play out in a calm and professional manner. The Carter Center in partnership with MeckMIN (Charlotte’s Interfaith Network) reminds us that:
1. Duty means doing the right thing even when it’s hard. This year Americans have a duty to wait for every valid ballot to be counted even if it takes a while – because a slower process is just as valid as a fast one. Every generation before us has done their duty to keep our democracy strong, it’s up to us now.
2. The reason for a longer process should be clear and uncontroversial: the need to ensure the accurate counting of ballots cast this year by voters who choose to use alternatives to voting in person on election day in response to the risks presented by the Coronavirus. These alternatives, specifically voting in person during early voting periods and voting with an absentee ballot delivered by mail or other means, have been used safely in many states for many years. Indeed, in the case of absentee ballots, the American military has safely used this option for more than 140 years. [Source: Carter Center]
3. The United States has thousands of election officials around the country, and surveys of these officials illustrate their strong dedication to a fair and impartial process. [Source: Carter Center]
4. America’s election workers are our neighbors and friends who work side by side to make sure every ballot is counted, fairly and properly. Our election systems are not perfect, but we can trust our local election workers to ensure the accuracy of this year’s election.
5. The average election official has worked in 7 previous elections. They have experience working alongside other non-partisan officials in presidential elections where Republicans won and elections where Democrats won. While this year’s elections may be different from those in the past, we can trust that election officials know what they’re doing.
6. This year more Americans will vote absentee in order to keep safe from the coronavirus. It falls on the US Postal Service to deliver these ballots and they are more than up to the challenge. Each day, the USPS handles nearly 200 million pieces of mail. Americans can trust that they can handle the increased volume of absentee ballots while keeping the election system secure.
7. No election system is perfect, but America’s elections are some of the very best in the world. Americans have been holding elections for almost two-hundred and fifty years. We have successfully voted during the Civil War, two World Wars, and other crises. Americans can be confident that we will overcome this year’s challenges to hold a fair election.
8. We have a shared duty to protect our democracy and republic. [Source: Democracy for President]