Election Eve Info

Reposting from Twitter, because that’s the easiest way to do it:

— JS

32 Comments on “Election Eve Info”

  1. Voted in person in my predominately white, middle class neighborhood in CA; the whole thing took ten minutes. There was no line and there were no poll watchers.

    Other voters out here weren’t so lucky. :(

  2. Washington has been vote by mail since.. well, since I’ve been able to vote. I won’t know what to do with a polling station! Ballets were dropped off in the usual box outside the elections office a week ago. Thankfully easy

  3. New York is still way behind the curve in this – our Board of Elections is one of the few things the Mayor and Governor agree on – but still, in just 8 days over a million New Yorkers did vote early. Every time we walked past our local polling place at the nearby high school. there was a long line. But if even New Jersey can go to all voting by mail, why can’t we?

    We voted a few weeks ago by mail, however, and tracking shows our votes were received and accepted,

  4. I hope you all in the states get a relatively calm election day, followed by a peaceful transfer of power.

  5. My vote was recorded and accepted on 10/23. Whew.

    I’ve postcarded, texted, and posted. Now it’s just the waiting.

  6. Voted by mail and was informed that my ballot was received and would be counted. Thanks for the photo of the cat to ease my nerves. Let us have calm, no matter how this goes.

  7. As an election judge tomorrow, when you’re looking at the places to return your mail-in ballot in person, let me state this as clearly as I can:


    As a poll worker in Illinois, I’m dreading the folks coming in to give us their mail-in ballots tomorrow and having to tell them that they either have to drop it off somewhere else, or surrender it to us and vote again on the same paper ballots other folks are using. Other than accepting ballots to surrender to the Election Office as proof that someone didn’t vote (those ballots will not be counted), in our state, poll workers are legally prohibited from handling or transporting mail-in ballots to be counted.

    Read the instructions closely and don’t screw it up. There’s too much at stake.

  8. My vote was recorded on the 21st, a couple of days after I dropped it off in a ballot dropbox 3 blocks from my house.

    It’s nice to live in a state where they’re not actively trying to make it hard to vote.

  9. John, I’m about to start a 12 hour GOTV shift, in a snowstorm. Ive already lost power once for 2 hours today. Thank you for using your platform this way. People – even if you aren’t part of a formal campaign, can you think of one or two people you can help make a plan to vote? Thanks, Abe

  10. Here in NC, more than 10,000 ballots have been rejected (usually because of some technicality regarding the witness signature.) We’ve been helping people “cure” those ballots before tomorrow so their votes get counted. If that can’t happen, and they know their ballot was rejected, they can vote in person on election day. So if you voted early, PLEASE check and make sure that it was accepted. I dropped off my absentee ballot at the BOE as soon as I could. I checked online and it was accepted soon after. Tomorrow I’ll be a “poll observer” from 6:30 am to 7:30 pm for the Democratic party to prevent any problems/mischief. Trust me, I won’t be going armed and I’m not an intimidating figure.

  11. I voted, went around the corner to the local Walgreens, dropped it off in the offical ballot box and went in to Walgreens and bought some shampoo – took me about 7 minutes. I feel for these people who are standing in line for a gazillion hours, in inclement weather, fulfilling their duties as American citizens.

  12. Voted last week on the first day of voting here in Maryland. We got there at 6:30 am for a 7 am opening and the line was already half a mile long. Took about 90 minutes to get in and vote, which is just fine.

  13. Filled out my ballot online and printed it out. Prepared the packet correctly and dropped in my local dropbox. Tracked my ballot online every day until the system told me my ballot had been counted. So when Washington reports its initial vote tallies tomorrow my vote will be in that batch. Of course, Washington is a solid blue state, and I live in a solid blue district, so I pretty my know who the winner will be here. Hint: all the ones I voted for.

  14. My husband & I took our completed ballots to the Eastern Market drop box on Capitol Hill almost a month ago. We’ve also tracked our ballots which have been received & accepted. Make America Safe Again. Make America Make Sense Again.

  15. The NYT has a great list of how and when states collect and report the various kinds of ballots – https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/10/27/upshot/election-results-timing.html.

    I love mail-in voting, but I’m glad we have election judges at each drop box in Illinois. I’m seeing a lot of eager voters who haven’t signed or sealed their ballot properly, and those might not be counted if not corrected by our tireless judges.

    And each Illinois county does it slightly differently; pre-stamped or add your own, two envelopes or one envelope, sign the outside or sign the inside. How do the states that only do mail-in voting manage these details? Illinois does tend to add bells and whistles, presumably so each county can feel extra special.

  16. We’re in a state where they’ll tell us whether the ballot was *delivered* to them but not whether it’s counted as *valid*… until after the polls close on election day. I am… not thrilled… about that, but hey, at least we’re not one of the states that does zero tracking at all!

  17. Roberta @ 2.18:

    In Washington, you fill out your ballot, put it in the inner security envelope, put that in the postage-paid mailing envelope, seal it, sign and date the back. Thus far in my county, 67% of registered voters have already got their ballots in, and 73% of them used the secure dropboxes.

  18. Just checked the Minnesota ballot tracking again, to have exact dates. It says “Your ballot was accepted on October 1, 2020 and will be counted.” We’d taken our ballots to the drop-off box at our city hall. An election worker was there to help out. City hall was also where the early in-person voting was being held.

  19. Applied for an absentee ballot in South Carolina in early September.

    Tracked it online and checked my mail almost obsessively once the website indicated the ballot had been mailed to me on 24 September.

    As of 20 October it hadn’t been received so we went to vote in person. We went before the polls opened but were still about 200th in line.

    At the time-of poll opening a gentlemen came down the line announcing that if one had requested an absentee ballot, one couldn’t vote in person but had to use the ballot received in the mail.

    After relating our circumstances, the poll worker wasn’t certain as to what we could do but did go off to find an answer – which he provided shortly thereafter.

    Two phone calls and an hour of driving later, we had cast our votes.

    Total elapsed time – two and a half hours and 30 miles of driving but a most rewarding experience. It won’t turn back the red tide here in the Upstate but there was no way in hell that we were going to sit this out.

  20. Roberta, I voted in Illinois a few weeks ago–in person, but the closest drop box was in the same courtyard that the in-person voting line circled, so I got to watch the mail-in voters drop their ballots off with the tireless election judges, who stood there in the freezing rain and carefully reviewed the ballots, explaining how to correct errors, etc. The line for the mail-in box was shorter than the in-person voting line (10-15 minutes as opposed to two hours) but I was really impressed by the way the judges were dealing with voters. Kudos to them, and (while I’m at it) to the poll workers inside the building, too, who certainly were patient and tireless as well!

  21. Early. In person. Straight Constitution Party vote. (One of these is a lie.)

    Waited for the second week and did not have to stand in line at all. My county has 59 % of REGISTERED VOTERS already accepted by mail or early in-person. Only about 5% have to show up on Tuesday to match 2016’s figures.

  22. Ballot dropped off at polling office some time ago.

    Please god let this madness end.

  23. As noted previously, Washington state is all vote-by-mail, and has been for at least 10 years, I think. My one concession to paranoia was driving down to Renton to put my ballot in the drop box right outside the Election Office. Three days later, it was marked as received and accepted.

    If the states really wanted to increase voter participation, they would ALL be vote-by-mail for all elections. And they would also, as Washington does, publish and mail non-partisan Voter Information Pamphlets to every registered voter, so we can assess every candidate and every proposition/initiative . It makes informed voting breathtakingly easy.

  24. In King County (WA State), they validate signatures as soon as they get the ballots, but don’t start tabulation (by scanner) until after 8pm election evening. I’ve checked online, and my ballot has been accepted.

    As an elections observer, I’ve watched the signature validation process, and it works pretty well. They have a large number of temp workers doing the first step, which involves bringing up signatures from the last six elections the voter has voted in on a computer and comparing them to the one on the ballot envelope. In most cases, it’s pretty easy to identify a match. The temps are instructed to pull any envelope they have the slightest question about, and these are referred to a panel of handwriting experts.

    If the signature doesn’t match, it is required that the elections department notify the voter three times, twice by phone or email, and once with a written letter including a signature form. I got one of the letters a few years ago, and resubmitted my signature with no trouble.

    I would strongly recommend that other states adopt this policy.

  25. Wisconsin’s post offices are begging for help, with such a high mail-iin voting year, and so many of their people are out sick with covid-19.

    Detroit is begging for volunteers to do mail delivery for the same reasons.


    I was fortunate enough to actually do early voting in person last week in a lull in the line at my polling station. It was the same place for early voting where I’ve always voted (we’ve never had early voting or mail-in voting before), but the stupid Board of Elections trying to make voting as impossible and difficult as possible assigned many tens of thousands of voters to very small venues like mine — a church basement, while the space at Barclay’s Sports Stadium had hardly anyone assigned there for early voting.

    Also, when I got in to vote, the machine wouldn’t you know malfunctioned and I was there for far longer than I was confortable, masks even so worn by all. It is a basement! and no ventilation!

    In the end NYC cast nearly 1 million 2hundred thousand early votes in person.

  26. Voted in person at an early voting station in MD last Monday. My wife hit the same station last Tuesday. Took about 30-40 mins for me to get through the line, she breezed through.

  27. Foxessa: Volunteer mail delivery? That’s a new one one me. How much training does such a volunteer need?

    JS: Smudge is so incredibly photogenic. Thank you for the picture. (Recently I *finally* got a Smudge picture as the Whatever site header, so instantly grabbed it as the image for my Speed Dial plug-in. Yay Smudge!)

  28. DH and I dropped our ballots in the drop box in front of the fire station, which is right next to the library where I work, on the second day it was open for business. Two days later, we got confirmation of acceptance. To all the people braving inclement weather, long lines, and other obstacles to voting, bully for you! I send a virtual hot beverage for your wait in line.

  29. I voted mid-October by mail and tracked that it was received and opened and counted.

    One nice thing you can do for people stuck waiting in long lines to vote is to make a donation to “Pizza To The Polls.” It’s a non-partisan organization dedicated to making the long voting line wait less sucky by giving free slices of pizza to the waiting voters. The organization tries to get the pizzas from a local non-chain pizzeria where possible, so double yay.