Drop Boxes Emerge As Unlikely Battleground In Early Voting Tensions
As citizens seek safe ways to vote during a pandemic, the validity and locations of ballot drop boxes in California and Texas are at issue. Other early voting obstacles have emerged as Americans turn out early in record numbers.
Trump Urges California GOP To 'Fight On' With Unofficial Ballot Boxes Despite Prosecution Threat
President Donald Trump took to Twitter on Tuesday to urge the California Republican Party to “fight on” in its move to collect ballots in unofficial “drop boxes’’ around the state, in defiance of legal threats from state officials. Trump’s comments come a day after top California officials sent the state party a cease-and-desist notice, ordering them to remove the unofficial ballot drop boxes. The appearance of the boxes prompted Gov. Gavin Newsom to accuse California Republicans of “willing to lie, cheat and threaten our democracy all for the sake of gaining power.” (Marinucci, 10/14)
The New York Times:
The Fight Over Absentee Ballots Intensifies Around Drop Boxes
From lawsuits by the Trump campaign to a decree from the governor of Texas — to the sudden appearance of boxes falsely labeled “official” in California — Republicans are intensifying efforts to eliminate the use of drop boxes to collect absentee ballots, or using them in ways that undermine confidence in their security. (Thrush and Corasaniti, 10/13)
The Washington Post:
Early Voting Begins In Texas With High Turnout, Despite New Legal Developments On Voting Access
Early voting in Texas began Tuesday with crowds of excited voters waiting in line for several hours in some places to cast their ballots, even as new legal developments sowed confusion and threatened to restrict options for voting ahead of Election Day. As they have in other states, long lines formed outside voting locations as socially distanced voters sometimes turned up hours before early in-person voting began Tuesday morning. Many brought folding chairs, lunches and umbrellas to wait their turn. (Ye Hee Lee, Gardner and Martin, 10/14)
The New York Times:
Why Early Voting In Some States Has Had A Rough Start.
Virginia’s online voter registration portal crashed on the final day it was available when roadside utility workers cut the wrong cable. Texans waited in long lines on the first day of early voting in their state’s biggest cities, and in one county in the Houston suburbs, a programming error took down all of the voting machines for much of the morning. On Georgia’s second day of early voting, long lines again built up at polling places in the Atlanta suburbs. The hurdles to early voting on Tuesday resulted from a combination of intense voter interest that stressed the capacity of overwhelmed local elections officials and the sort of messiness that has long been common in American elections and which is now under a microscope as concerns over voter suppression and the unprecedented dynamics of voting during a pandemic collide. (Epstein, Saul and Fernandez, 10/13)