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How Safe is your Mail-in Ballot?

By Robin Bakker

With the coronavirus conveniently taking place during the election year, and nothing has been done to slow down the virus, mail-in voting has become a popular choice instead of going to vote on voting day. Meanwhile, Trump has made it clear that he is unhappy with the idea of people doing this.

Over a million ballots have already been cast in states that publicly report that data, according to forbes.com. It also states that 64 million mail-in ballots have been requested by voters in 24 states which has exceeded the number of votes cast prior to the election in 2016.

Mail-in voting has been used before and Florida is one of the states that allows this. However, given the circumstances of having to stay 6-feet away from people and the risk of getting COVID-19 is still a high probability, a lot of people, mainly democrats, have been promoting mail-in voting for this coming election.

Unless the big unlikely of the virus taking a steep decline in cases in the U.S. or we find a cure in the next month, mail-in voting seems to be the safest bet. For those who are more medically inclined to get the virus, they should not have to leave their house to vote.

What I don’t understand is how Trump and the right side of politics think of this as a bad thing. If all they talk and care about is people’s rights to vote and how it is their civic responsibility, who cares if they mail the vote rather than show up. We already have higher numbers of voters than ever before, so just because the majority lead democrat means they should not count?

According to forbes.com, 53.8% have voted democrat, 16.7% have voted republican, and 29.2% are unaffiliated voters. And I could be mistaken, but the “fake votes” that Trump keeps bringing up only account for .0025% of the votes accounted for. And nearly half of those are probably votes for him.

Trump also stated in the debate on Tuesday, Sept. 29 that the election is rigged with mail-in votes and it is a disaster. However, most of the states that have started mail-in voting are run by republicans and none of them have traces of fraud according to cnn.com. There are also other lies that Trump said in the debate that Daniel Dale and Marshall Cohen of CNN have debunked. 

No matter how many times this man can lie, his followers are bound to believe him. But all he is doing is proving that he is offended and upset that people do not want him to be president anymore. He will refuse to look at the real facts that mail-in voting still works and is not rigged in anyway.

And I don’t know why or how there could be fake votes when the process to get the mail-in ballot is one of the most excruciating things I have ever done. First things first, you have to be registered to vote in your home state, or there could be a way to register in Florida.

I personally am registered in Missouri. I receive a ballot by going to the voting website for Missouri, fill out an application, print it out and sign it, send it to the county election office, wait for them to send my ballot, fill out the ballot and sign it, and send it back.

The worst part of this process is the waiting. And the anxiety of if my ballot will get back in time for it to count. I also fear that because I am in Tampa, there could be a fine line since I am not in St. Louis, it does not count, or I won’t be able to get a ballot, or it will take longer to mail.

No matter what I have to do or how long it will take, I will do my part in voting this year. I hope the rest of the students who can vote will do the same.

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