election checklist, week four.

August 17, 2020
make a plan to vote | reading my tea leaves

We have 78 days until the 2020 election in the US. That’s 11 weeks during which I’ll be trying my damnedest to get leaders elected who will move the dial toward equity, inclusion, and progressive policies that will do the least harm and the greatest good.

I love lists. I love checking things off of lists. I’d hazard the guess that lots of folks reading this do, too. So, every Monday until November, I’ll be listing one specific action to take in preparation of the election. Electoral politics won’t solve everything, but voting is a tool in the box and it needs to be sharpened, oiled, and ready for action.

Week Four: Make a Plan to Vote

The coronavirus pandemic is drastically changing the way folks are going to vote in the 2020 election and to put it mildly, some of us really need a primer. Voting laws are very local and vary from county to county and state to state so it’s important to know what to expect wherever and however it is that you cast your vote, especially in a year where that might look a little different than usual.

This week, to make sure there’s no confusion as Election Day draws nearer, I’m doing a little research to make sure I have a clear plan for how and when I’ll cast my vote, and I’m suggesting folks reading do the same.

Below, a few resources to choose from for making quicker work of wading through the information glut:

How to Vote By Mail: This 15-minute lesson from NPR’s Life Kit Podcast on voting during the pandemic and on voting by mail, specifically is quick and clear and motivating.

Plan Your Vote: NBC News is regularly updating their Plan Your Vote site, built to help folks across the US mark their calendars and understand the particulars of mail-in and early in-person voting laws wherever they are.

Receipt and postmark deadlines for absentee ballots: In case you want to go right to the source, this list from the National Conference of State Legislatures has state by state deadlines for voting outside of polling places.

National Vote At Home Institute: The website of the National Vote at Home Institute has loads of information for anyone wanting to do more reading on voting from home generally. It also has a pretty straightforward interface for getting to the particulars of voting from home, depending on where you live.


And don’t forget:

+ Check your registration.

+ Send some postcards.

+ Complete the Census.

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  • Reply Susan August 17, 2020 at 3:09 pm

    Thanks so much for links! I’m moving (just two apts over) but in the chaos forgot i needed to update this. So important!!! Thank you!

  • Reply Erin August 21, 2020 at 9:52 am

    Went and dropped off primary ballot here in Delaware yesterday. Research and find out where to drop your ballot or vote in your state. It will definitely quell uncertainties and make you feel more empowered. Sounds odd, but just finding the department of elections and knowing where the drop box is and knowing my vote will be counted is so cathartic and dare I say I feel very hopeful that this election will change our course. Having not driven much over the last few months and having my baby in tow, having a plan feels good. Like I’m finally in control of something. I also have volunteered to collect and drop off ballots for my mother and grandmother and sisters since it’s a 40 minute drive to drop. Signed up for postcards and breathing deeply.

    • Reply ERIN BOYLE August 21, 2020 at 9:55 am

      Yes; I love all of these suggestions and agree so much about breathing easier with a plan in place!


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