How Will You Vote This Year?

Note I didn’t ask, “Who will you vote for.” Today’s post is all about the actual nuts and bolts about voting. I know there are plenty of people who are doing mail-in ballots. Personally, I will be voting in person. Not because I think mail-in ballots are open to manipulation (I highly doubt that) or because I think there’s no chance of getting COVID from voting in person.

I’ll be voting in person for two basic reasons. First, I already voted in person in the primaries, and I was very impressed with how my local community ran the polls. They were well supervised, and the process was easy and straight forward. I feel like the odds of me personally getting infected with COVID while I’m voting are very, very low. Social distancing measures were implemented, and mask usage was strong. More importantly, there hasn’t been much in the way of COVID cases here in my corner of Maine.

So since I don’t think it’s dangerous, it makes sense to me not to do things differently this year. Note that I could totally see the need to vote by mail if circumstances were different. If the transmission rates were higher, or the voting process was more precarious, or the lines were going to be very long. Basically, because none of this is the case for me, I think it’s that much more important that I vote in person.

This is mainly due to my second reason for voting in person. I believe Trump is going to do his darnedest to claim “victory” if he’s ahead in the results on election night. I think it’s much likelier the absentee votes are going to swing heavily toward Biden, and that Trump will do all he can to claim those votes are fraudulent. I mean, that’s what he’s literally already saying, so I don’t think it’s a huge stretch to think that. (This despite that all claims of “rigged ballots” have been debunked time and time again.)

Because of the odds of Trump doing this, I think it becomes that much more important for those who can safely and confidently vote in person on election day try their hardest to actually do that. Some of this is me just looking at how I can have the greatest positive impact toward solving what I see as a real threat to our country. The best case scenario in November is for Trump to get a real drubbing at the polls. For it to be not even close. (Which has a decent shot of happening at the moment, according to FiveThirtyEight. They estimate Biden has a 3 in 10 shot of winning the popular vote by double digits. They estimate Trump has a 2 in 10 shot of winning the election at all. So it’s likelier at the moment that Biden will have a blowout win than that Trump will come out on top. Though 1 in 5 odds are still far too high for my taste. For reference, FiveThirtyEight gave Trump a 29 out of 100 chance of winning the election back in 2016.)

So if I can vote in person and make Biden’s numbers look as decent as possible on the night of the actual election, you can bet that’s what I’m going to do. I’m not going to actively encourage everyone to follow suit: I think there are too many variables involved in the decision. But I did want to at least mention what I’m doing and why, in case some of you are in the same position I find myself.


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