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Opinion: Letter to the Editor: League of Women Voters Supports No-Excuse Absentee Voting
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Opinion: Letter to the Editor: League of Women Voters Supports No-Excuse Absentee Voting

The League of Women Voters of the Fairfax Area is submitting this statement of support for No Excuse Absentee Voting to the Joint Subcommittee on Election Review. The league’s support of equal and easy access for voting across the Commonwealth includes legislation to allow all registered voters to vote absentee prior to Election Day without specifying a reason. This support covers absentee voting either by mail or in person.

Reasons to Support No Excuse Absentee Voting

  • All voters should have equal access to the ballot.

  • No voter should have to provide personal unrelated information to cast a ballot.

  • Voters have found it very confusing about their eligibility to vote before Election Day.

  • Voting absentee in-person is as secure as voting on Election Day.

  • Local Election Offices have had success in reducing long lines on Election Day by encouraging absentee voting.

  • For voting absentee in-person, eliminating the cumbersome process of completing the absentee application would save time as well as the expense of printing the form.

  • Extra personnel are needed to explain the form and check it for completion before a voter can proceed to checking in.

  • Eliminating the use of the application form would speed the voting process considerably.

The league believes that the cost of providing equal access for voting throughout Virginia is a responsibility shared by both the Commonwealth and local governments. Legislators and members of local governing bodies should adequately fund elections. After meeting with local general registrar, the league anticipates an increase in both types of absentee voting if No Excuse Absentee Voting is enacted, with a gradual decrease of voters on Election Day at the polls. Given this shift, it would likely result in an eventual “wash” with regard to resource needs.

The League of Women Voters of the Fairfax Area is a nonpartisan political organization that encourages informed and active participation of citizens in government, works to increase understanding of major public policy issues, and influences public policy through education and advocacy. Learn more at http://www.lwv-fairfax.org/