Protect the November 2020 Election by Offering Vote-by-Mail in all 50 States

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In the wake of the coronavirus crises, many Americans are concerned about their ability to vote in a safe manner, or that the November election could be postponed. 

Elections are our nation’s most important collective activity. They, like all other mass participatory activities, must be adjusted and improved to protect public health and democracy alike.

The best way to ensure a safe, on-time, fair and inclusive election is for all 50 states to offer a vote-by-mail or no-excuse absentee option, and be prepared to send mail-in ballots to all registered voters. States like Colorado and Oregon already employ such a system, and have higher voter participation rates than the national average.

If we as a nation begin planning for this now, with adequate federal funding, we can ensure an election that is safe for all eligible Americans. We can also safeguard the election from attempts to subvert the will of the people through a postponement or limiting access to the polls.

These measures should also include self-sealing postage-paid envelopes, as well as expanded schedules for in-person early voting, so those who prefer to vote in person can do so while maintaining social distance and avoiding a cluster on Election Day.

Let’s work together in a bipartisan way so that this health crises does not become a crises of democracy.