Letter: Vote by mail is a good idea across the board

From: Patricia Grabill


In a 2016 article in Washington Monthly, writer Phil Keisling shared reasons why it is good for all states to have universal vote by mail. It’s a well-written, informative article and worth reading (washingtonmonthly.com/magazine/janfeb-2016/vote-from-home-save-your-country/). In the article he writes about the ease of voting by mail, the unlikelihood of voter fraud, and the fact that universal voting by mail “saves money, simplifies elections, and eliminates voting lines.”

In the states that have universal vote by mail, the turnout was over 70 percent in both Oregon and Colorado. Every state with universal vote by mail had a higher turnout than the national average. Vote by mail also is more secure than our current election process. No one can vote twice, vote with another person’s ballot or vote if they are not registered to vote in their state.

Having recently attended an Indiana vote by mail nonpartisan meeting, I was encouraged to realize that some Indiana legislators are on board in supporting Indiana Vote by Mail, and even those who are not yet on board are willing to listen. I thank those who are in support of this necessary legislation.

Here are some reasons why I am in favor of Indiana vote by mail:

  • Indiana voter turnout in the last election (2016) was 58 percent. In Marion County it was 19 percent, and in Hamilton County 34 percent. A 12-hour time limit for voting is simply not sufficient to allow people to go to the polls to cast their votes. Vote by mail eliminates this problem. Voter turnout totals for all the counties in Indiana can be found at in.gov/sos/elections/files/2016_General_Election_Turnout.pdf.
  • Indiana does not require employers to allow employees to leave work in order to vote, so that further limits voting time. Voting by mail would give all registered voters equal access under the law. We cannot have a participatory democracy if all registered citizens are unable to participate.
  • Vote by mail would save Indiana millions of dollars.
  • Colorado, Oregon and Washington already have vote by mail in all elections. California will enable vote by mail in 2018.
  • Eighteen other states have some form of vote by mail.
  • Vote by mail has a 100 percent paper trail. Therefore, no voter fraud possibilities.

Finally, I can see no possible objection to Indiana vote by mail. Please work to bring Indiana in line with the other forward-thinking states and allow Indiana vote by mail to be heard in committee and finally to be made into law.