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As the sky-high voter enthusiasm satisfies the realities of America’s creepy democratic institutions during the pandemic, early turnout continues to break records. This means that there are long queues in certain places and management errors occur during some mail voting, but according to experts, this is an overall operating system.
Former Deputy Postmaster Ronald Stroman (Ronald Stroman) specifically talked about expanding the mailing vote: “Despite some concerns, things are going well.”
The US Elections Project, a voting tracking database managed by political scientist Michael McDonald at the University of Florida, said that as of Saturday, more than 26 million people had voted. This is more than six times the number of votes cast at the same point in 2016.
Although there are still more than two weeks before election day, here are some votes that have been cast.
The Democratic Party comes into effect
Opinion poll data over the past few months shows that Democrats intend to turn out much earlier than Republicans, while Republicans are responding to President Trump’s nearly constant false claim that mailing votes will lead to widespread fraud.
Now, we have obtained evidence confirming these polls from actual voting behavior.
According to the forecast analysis of data company TargetSmart, Democrats have received about 53% of the early votes. The company uses voter data other than party registration to predict turnout, compared with 36% for Republicans.
Early voters also tended to get older. According to TargetSmart analysis, voters over the age of 50 account for more than 70% of the votes. Compared with the 2016 general election, there were still thousands of young people voting at this moment in October, but their proportion of the overall vote was still lower than then.
It is worth noting that African-American voters accounted for a larger proportion of early voters than in 2016. According to Targetsmart’s analysis, the number of African American voters who voted early was more than six times the number of voters who voted at the same time in the last presidential election.
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Decline in confidence
As election day approached, President Trump’s remarks also affected people’s confidence in the election process.
Overall, according to a survey recently released by Pew Research, the proportion of registered voters who said that the U.S. elections this year will be well-managed has dropped significantly in the past two years, from 81% in October 2018. Drop to 62% this year. .
This decline is driven by Trump supporters, half of whom now say they think the elections are not well managed. More than half also said that they believed that absentee votes would not be counted correctly.
These trends worry voting experts, who say that confidence in the basic details of the election mechanism is the key to whether the results can be considered legitimate.
Eddie Perez, an election expert at the OSET Institute, said: “If a large part of the public doesn’t believe that our election results are legitimate, then you are actually a divided country.” “I’m not speaking verbally. The meaning of the above. Literally, you are a divided country, and what you really care about here is the peaceful transfer of power.”
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Long lines, technical problems in some areas
Last week, when early voting began in Georgia and Texas, some polling stations quickly formed long lines, and some voters waited in line for many hours before voting.
Officials said computer problems played an important role in these delays.
In Georgia, Republican Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger said that such a huge amount of visits to the registration database used to register people to vote early is in trouble.
Stephen Fowler of the Georgia Public Broadcasting Corporation said, “If you’re looking at just a lot of information, it’s like everyone is taking I-285 in the morning, sometimes you have to stagger the peak hours.” “Our supply The company has been working hard with our employees to ensure that we are considering some other optimization measures and we should complete this work this weekend.”
In Fort Bend County, Texas, a check-in failure caused at least four areas there to close.
A voter named Renee told Elizabeth Trowell of Houston Public Media after waiting in line for nearly four hours to vote: “Frankly, I think this is a suppression of voters.” “Voting early. There can be no glitches on the first day. There is no way…I have never seen anything like this.”
Election officials and experts have warned throughout the summer that as jurisdictions have to merge polling stations and recruit more voters, some live polling stations this fall may be plagued by queue time.
Another factor: social distancing efforts may even make relatively short boundaries appear longer.
However, across the country, the route has always been an exception, not a rule. There is also an optimistic view that as the early voting proceeds, the areas dealing with routes will begin to become easier.
For example, Gwinnett County, Georgia, reported that there were long waits in multiple areas at the beginning of the week, but by Friday afternoon, the county’s online wait tracker showed that the wait time did not exceed 90 minutes.
Perez said: “Many people are keen to participate in this election.” “Therefore, there is a lot of demand for people to go there to vote, which is very appropriate. On the first day of early voting, the transaction volume you see may be The latter part of this period gradually decreases.”
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More emails, more questions
The states have rapidly expanded their efforts to vote by mail to serve 40% of voters, and they now say they plan to vote this way.
However, as usage increases, management errors will increase accordingly. It seems that every day there are reports of another batch of ballots, which were issued to voters because of some mistake.
Last week, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania. It was announced that the company responsible for printing and mailing the ballots had mistakenly sent the wrong ballots to nearly 29,000 voters. Last month, similar paperwork issues affected the mail voting of thousands of voters in Ohio and New York.
As WESA’s Lucy Perkins reported, Allegheny County election manager Dave Voye said on Wednesday: “The election is less than three weeks away. Our electoral system is something that voters can trust.” “This represents the failure of our contractor and has affected too many of our voters.”
The county has added a search function to its website so that voters can check whether they are one of the affected people and will also send new ballots to all voters.
Stroman, a former deputy postmaster and now a senior researcher at the Democracy Fund, said it’s important to remember that in all these cases, officials have spent enough time To correct the error. Officials also have safeguards to ensure that no one votes twice.
Stromman said: “I think what we have seen so far are basically normal mistakes, which are exacerbated by the global pandemic.”
President Trump tried to use this type of problem to prove that the entire mail voting system was flawed or fraudulent to some extent.
Kathleen Hale, an election management expert at Auburn University, said that this type of problem occurs in every election, but this is not a sign of any evil or vandalism.
Hal said: “A large part of this process is carried out by people.” “And they are not perfect.”