Mail-In Ballots, Please!
Earlier this month, Governor Hogan ordered all precinct level polling places to open for early voting and on election day, Tuesday, November 3, 2020. We are concerned that the current guidelines of the 2020 election for early voting and election day will not allow for safe conditions for Maryland poll workers and voters. We worry that Maryland will not have enough poll workers, who tend to be in high-risk populations, nor sufficient Personal Protective Equipment for them. While having early voting available should reduce the number of people voting in person on election day, we are still concerned with having appropriate social distancing and sanitizing measures in place to ensure a safe general election in November. It is also unlikely that the Covid-19 virus, which has already killed more than 3,250 Marylanders will be controlled by then.
Please write Governor Hogan and ask him to reverse his decision to not send mail-in ballots to every registered voter as was done fairly successfully in the primary election. Since he made this decision, many school boards have announced that children will not be returning in person in the fall and many library systems continue to remain closed to the general public, adding additional strain to in-person voting.
In addition, his plan to require that voters go through the additional step of applying for a mail-in ballot differs from the primary and may create unnecessary confusion. Governor Hogan has the power to change course immediately and send a mail-in ballot to all registered voters for our general election this November. This is the best way to safeguard our health in the middle of this pandemic while providing the greatest access to voting.
Please click here to access Governor Hogan's Portal, right now there is no message topic for Election or Voting, but there is an Other and/or Health option.
If you would like to vote by mail, you can fill out the absentee ballot application (which will be sent out by the Maryland State Board of Elections). This application, which is not your actual ballot, as was done in the primary, will be sent to the address under which you are registered to vote. You may also request an absentee ballot online by October 27, 2020.
You can check your voter registration address here.
If you need to register to vote or update your current address, you must do so by Tuesday, October 13, 2020. Or you may exercise your right to “same day” register and vote during the early voting period and on election day. You can find further guidance on this process here.
If you are unable to vote by mail, you must vote in-person during the early vote period or on election day at your designated polling location in your jurisdiction.
Here are some additional resources: