Voting Rules in a Nutshell

By Eric G. Braun, Senior Writer, US Road Warriors

Not everybody is in their home territory on Election Day, especially those that work in our industry. Accordingly, the rules on absentee voting have been relaxed in some states while most states even have early voting. But typical America, there are a handful of states that are straight up strict about the voting process and refuse to change with the times.

The do’s and don’ts of voting have changed a bit with definitive terms that mean different things and can confuse a voter right out of wanting to cast their ballot.

Early voting - Early voting takes place in person before Election Day. You don’t need an excuse to vote early, and you can vote early even if you are capable of voting at the polls on Election Day. Most states offer early voting at this point. Typically, you can mail in your ballot or drop it off at the County Board of Elections or your designated place as ordered by the presiding district or jurisdiction.

Absentee Voting – Absentee voting is conducted by mail, and sometimes in person, before Election Day. Contact your local election officials to request an absentee ballot application. This is typical for Veterans, College Students and those who will be overseas or unable to be in their assigned polling place on Election Day. 

A handful of states (including Delaware, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, New York, South Carolina, and Virginia), will let you vote early only if you have a valid excuse for not voting on Election Day. This is technically NOT early voting, although it does take place before Election Day. We call this “absentee in-person voting.”

And a  note from your mother is not considered a valid excuse.

Since the crew from US Road Warriors will be in Dallas, Texas, at the Women in Trucking, “Accelerate” Convention on Election Day, I filled out and submitted my ballot. The process is simple, but unlike those bikes you put together on Christmas Eve, for this concept you need to read the directions. You shade in the oval, just like those tests in school, sign your life away past all the legal warnings and put that sealed envelope into another sealed envelope--just think of it as the “Turducken” of voting.

For those who may not know, a Turducken, is the combination of a duck stuffed inside a chicken, which is then stuffed inside of a turkey. It's more poultry than you might care for, and for my taste buds the fowl …was foul.

As of the week ending October 23, 2016, more than 5.9 million people have cast their ballot. I will spare you another round of poll numbers, because they change daily and it depends on your source of news. 

Huh? You mean the media has their own agenda?

Sarcasm yes, but a sad sign of the times in our nation, where the media takes an active role in propping up one candidate over the other. The news media has gone from reporting to manipulating, and has lost America's trust accordingly.

Regardless of whom you support, or in the case of this year’s choices, whoever you dislike the least, be sure to get out and vote. It is a distinct civil responsibility and one we take for granted. 

To check the details of your state voting regulations, click here:

 https://www.vote.org/early-voting-calendar/

Our nation is built on a Government of the people, by the people, for the people; something the politicians need to remember. 

Remember to vote… early and often.

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