BOSTON (CBS) – Daylight is in view for a bill on Beacon Hill that makes some major changes in our election process, and one of them is a really terrible idea.
That would be the early-voting provision allowing Massachusetts voters to cast their ballots as much as 11 days before election day.
We’re following the pack here, no doubt about it. We’ve been one of only 14 states that limits early voting to absentee ballots which you have to have an excuse to obtain, or, at least, make up an excuse.
And if this new bill is passed, you can count on a major increase in early voting.
In 2008, 31-percent of Americans voted early, while only seven percent of Massachusetts voters did. In some states that allow it, a majority of the vote is cast well before election day.
And crucial decisions about who will wield power over us and our tax dollars are made without the benefit of crucial information.
Things happen all the time within 11 days of voting day that change the minds of large numbers of voters, including televised debates. That’s one reason we have campaigns to see how candidates hold up under pressure and scrutiny, which is never greater than in the final week-and-a-half of a close race.
So now we’re going to throw that away….why?
So that political machines can rush voters to the polls before they’ve done their homework?
So partisans won’t have to think too hard about their ballot?
Listen to Jon’s commentary: