By Tiara Starks
I am writing to you to inform you of an issue that is affecting the state of our nation’s democracy. Due to the impact of COVID-19, most of the country must start to offer voting-by-mail. Unfortunately, due to blowback from those who believe that voter fraud is inevitable, there is a stigma now associated with absentee voting that discourages most citizens from becoming involved and interested in local and national elections. My hope through this letter is to allow more people to see how important absentee-ballot voting is and to press the CT legislature to pass the proposed bill for expanded absentee ballots during this month’s special session.
As a resident of the neighborhood of Riverside, I strongly encourage the expansion of absentee ballots. Absentee ballots are more important than one might think, especially during this specific election year. Not only will these types of ballots help keep citizens safe, they will allow for those who would have otherwise not been able to attend an in-person voting polling location to participate. No matter what form that process takes, voting is an essential right for everyone and the vote-by-mail option should be put in place as it is designed to be substantially more effective than in-person voting. We see that COVID-19 has impacted our view of everyday life but what it should not do, is prohibit someone from exercising their right to vote.