Voter Registration Delays in a Republican County

31 10 2008

A story from hometown, New Jersey:

“My boyfriend registered to vote for the first time this year. He and I both live in Morris County, New Jersey. On October 10 he mailed his registration in to Trenton. The deadline for registering was October 14. As of October 29 he had not received any verification of his registration, so he e-mailed the Superintendent of Elections for Morris County, Roseanne Travaglia. On October 30 he received an e-mail response asking him to call her office because she had questions about his registration. When he called, he learned that although he sent his completed registration to the correct address well before the deadline, a clerical error made him ineligible to vote. He was told that Trenton office forwarded his registration to Bergen County instead of Morris County. It arrived in Bergen by the deadline, but by the time Bergen County office forwarded his information to the Morris County office the deadline had passed. He was told that he would have to use a provisional ballot on Election Day in order to vote.

Is this legal? Is this right? He could not have done anything to prevent this from happening except register even earlier than 4 days before the deadline – and that’s what deadlines are for, are they not? This is 100% clerical error – how can he be penalized for something over which he had no control, and in fact is a human mistake made by employees of the State of New Jersey?

Ah, and it’s only Friday. Happy goblin day – the creeps are out in droves.

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Maybe You Shouldn’t Vote

29 10 2008

“If everyone was a brilliant voter, we would never elect bad leaders, and the last eight years might have turned out quite differently. So this election year, before you step into a voting booth and possibly screw things up for the rest of us, I ask that you take a moment to answer the following questions and determine whether you have the skill and the know-how to vote responsibly for our next president.”

I understand the intention behind suggesting that informed voters are better than lots of voters – and that is true. However, this is not the time to scare first time voters into staying at home. Actually, there is never a time to do that. Part of taking the responsibility of voting seriously is understanding and acknowleging that, despite your assumptions and intentions, the person you selected (if they win) were a bad choice. Four years later, you will likely inform yourself more and become a *more* informed voter.

Ignorance doesn’t just evaporate – it’s a long, painful process to pull yourself up by your intellectual bootstraps and try to better yourself . If you never take the first steps of the journey, however, you will never reach the end. That includes screwing up. Do you think people who voted for a Third Party candidate in 2000 or 2004 haven’t done some soul searching leading up to the 2008 election?

C’mon – don’t be a willful ignoramus – vote as best you can, and pay attention once in a while to how your choice affects the next four years of your life and your neighbors’ lives.

 
More on Voting
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost