Opinion

Crisis demands safe voting 

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To the Editor;

Secretary of State Matt Dunlap recently said that “unless something radically changes,” he doesn’t expect Maine wouldn’t see a “major change” in the conduct of the July election.

 

Normal times can tolerate normal leaders. A crisis demands much more — vision, strength and a resolve to meet the needs of a free people in a democratic society. Maine leaders must step way up and protect the right of Mainers to safe voting that doesn’t force us to choose between our right to vote and contagious disease.

 

Maine’s current two-year budget is $7.9 billion. We absolutely should spend the additional $658,000 required to get $3.3 million in federal funds. Why? Access to safe voting is the foundation of this democracy. We should do everything we can to ensure it. Everything. Doing so for July ensures we are prepared for the November presidential election.

 

Every registered voter should receive a postage paid mail ballot, which will reduce crowding at polls. And, if increased mail ballots mean a slower vote count, we can live with a delay of a few days for the results, just as the founders did.

 

What we can’t live with is business as usual in the midst of a pandemic — not for July and not for November.

 

Maine has had one of the highest voting rates in the U.S. Our vote is our voice. Maine should do whatever it takes to ensure all citizens who choose to can vote safely and easily from home.

 

Leaders rise to their times. Maine, lead.

 

Lori Calderone 

Dover-Foxcroft

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