The state Senate approved a bill Monday allowing Virginians age 65 and older to vote by absentee ballot without having to provide an excuse.
Currently, Virginians are allowed to vote absentee only if they cannot get to the polls on Election Day for certain reasons, such as military service or jury duty. Last week, a Senate panel killed a bill that would have allowed any registered voter to vote absentee, but it approved a measure to allow seniors to do so.
On Monday, the Senate voted 28-9 for that bill, sponsored by Sen. John Miller (D-Newport News) and Sen. Jeffrey L. McWaters (R-Virginia Beach). All of those opposed were Republicans.
Why can’t anyone vote absentee? Don’t get me wrong. I am glad the vintage folks can vote absentee. Usually it required bending of the truth. But everyone should be able to without lying. It would save the state money in the first place. How many people would opt to vote absentee if given the choice?
I often vote early over at the voter registration office ( absentee in-person voting.) Then I take a nice day trip out of town. I don’t like some of my neighbors ghouling around syphoning information said aloud. But that’s just me.
This past year I voted absentee (absentee by mail). I just wanted to make sure I could vote and ordered up the ballot. The absentee ballot is not for those who want to cheat. It is detailed and takes a lot longer than voting in person, if you can walk right in. you also have to have it witnessed. However, after reading about the horror stories here in Prince William I am darn glad I did! it was a piece of cake as opposed to waiting in line for 4 hours.
What are State Republicans afraid of? All Virginians should write to their state senators (and delegates) and insist that they be allowed to vote absentee. It is simply the fiscal responsible thing to do.
On another note, Virginia Senate Republicans also voted to reappoint Helen Dragas as UVA rector. So far they are batting 0 in my book.