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Two views by Secretary of State Sam Reed on vote by mail, 10 years apart.

Post by Peter Callaghan / The News Tribune on April 5, 2011 at 3:39 pm with 5 Comments »
April 5, 2011 3:45 pm

Here’s what then-Thurston County auditor Sam Reed said about vote by mail and poll voting when he was a candidate for Secretary of State in 2000:

“I do think that many people want the ceremony, the interaction, the flags, the election board workers, and such, in order to feel like they are truly participating in our American political system,” Reed wrote. “We need to continue to provide that ‘election day fix’ for those people.

“But as times change and our American society changes, the way we shop, the way we bank, the way we telecommunicate, and the way we vote change. Vote by mail (and,

Secretary of State Sam Reed
in the future, online voting) is creating new rituals for democracy. In my opinion, these are healthy democratic rituals and are the future.

“After running a number of countywide vote-by-mail elections and creating several vote-by-mail precincts, I’ve concluded that elections of the future should not be conducted one way but rather should be a smorgasbord of choices – poll site, mail, and online. Each will have his or her own democratic rituals that develop and gain importance over time.”

And here’s what he said today after his bill to end poll voting in the state was signed by Gov. Chris Gregoire, making Washington just the second all-mail voting state in the nation:

“Vote-by-mail has been very successful in Washington, including in Pierce County. It simplifies things for the voter and for the election administrators not to have two parallel methods of voting. It is less expensive and I believe it boosts voter participation.

“Even before counties started switching, many voters themselves decided that this is the way they prefer to vote, over a period of several weeks, in the privacy and convenience of their own homes.”

Leave a comment Comments → 5
  1. dbreneman says:

    I would suggest that all voters write in a candidate for one non-significant office on each of their ballots. If your write-in candidate is not included in the official election results, it’s proof that your mail-in ballot was not counted. I’m also going to be sending my ballots in via certified mail with a return receipt. That way I will know the name of the county functionary that accepted and signed for it.

  2. OMG. Dbreneman – Take the tin foil off your head and research the safeguards that go into the voting process in Pierce County- or at least pick up the phone and ask to have it explained to you. It’s not like the Wizard of Oz is behind a curtain changing your vote with a sharpie!

  3. Just to clarify the tabulation of write-in votes in Washington State. All write-in votes are included in the final vote total. Cumulative write-in votes are listed following the candidates for each office. Individual names written in are not recorded unless the total number of write-in votes could impact the outcome of the election.

    Voters can verify that their ballot has been received by the Elections Division by going to the “My Vote” section on the Auditor’s website, which is available each election.

  4. truthbusterguy says:

    To get a drivers license in WA state you don’t have to prove you are a citizen. Illeagals are getting drivers licenses and they are voting. Sam Reed, tell me how this is better than poll voting. Reed in a rhino.

    Save the state: http://www.respectwashington.us/

    Help I-1122 gathr signatures.

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