Although nearly every state in the Union has used paper ballots for years, there is scarcely a mention of this fact in the mass media. It is time we said more about all the handy ways that paper ballots are now used to help us vote, and it is definitely time to consider how paper ballots can help us out in the 2004 election. For a glimpse of what is currently possible, check out the variety of applications used today in the State-by-State listing below.
Speaking of time, in some
states folks can even vote before and all the way up to the election.
They do not need an absentee excuse either. It is easy to see that the
advanced vote and early
vote are extremely compatible with our busy American lifestyle.
Again, in some places this is accomplished with paper ballots.
about the special procedures available for those who are disabled, ill,
or have been struck by an emergency? And how about those of us who are
traveling, are in the Military
or are living overseas?
You guessed it. There are paper ballots for those of us too.
Yes, our states have begun to think out of the black box, but they have only just begun. We can learn from our successes and failures only if we are willing to examine the results. Like anything else worthwhile; this will take effort on our part.
It is necessary to apply
for the paper ballots discussed here and referenced in the state-by-state
and territorial charts that follow. In most cases ballot application
forms can be obtained from either a state, a county, or a district office.
Where a form is not available on the Internet, often an application
may be obtained by calling or visiting an election office, or in lieu
of a particular form the required application information may be provided
in a written letter, by fax, or over the telephone.
The voting regulations, procedures, and forms vary widely from state to state. The ways that one may use a paper ballot can also differ from county to county. Even though every effort has been made to obtain the appropriate link to the official secretary of state source, please remember that links can change at any time. Because of HAVA, our National voting legislation, many of the states are updating their systems along with the information contained on their websites, and they will continue to do so.
In most cases the state and territorial instructions are simple and clearly indicated. If not, one may need to clarify these concerns with an official at one of the contact numbers given for the appropriate precinct, county, state, or territory. Most will find that their local offices to be very supportive.
a final check for anything which may have been forgotten, those who
are overseas or in the Military might look up the The Federal Government
listing of TEN
THINGS TO HELP ENSURE YOUR ABSENTEE VOTE IS COUNTED.
Problems with Computerized Voting
must insist on voting integrity and the strict enforcement of our voting
rights, or we will lose them! Please do not allow any controversy surrounding
this issue to discourage, dissuade, or prevent you from voting. The
expression of our Constitutional right to vote is needed more than ever
to counterbalance the efforts of those who would try to misuse the power
of this great Nation.
After checking out the specific paper ballot options available in your area, take a peek at what other places are doing across the Nation, in order to get a sense of the many voting methods available and to consider how folks where you live may also benefit from some of these practices.
Those of you who plan to vote with paper ballots, be sure to order your ballot as soon as possible as we are rapidly approaching the deadlines for all types of early voting. And... if you find this information of use, please feel free to copy it, print it, or pass it along to others.
Whatever you do, be sure
to vote November 2, 2004!