By Robert Weiner and Wesam Farah
While the Maryland chief elections officer, Linda Lamone, stopped the Post Office this week from sending guidance postcards to Maryland state voters with inaccurate information for Maryland, Governor Hogan on the other hand has kneecapped himself by forcing people to apply for for mail ballots or vote in person. Mail ballots were automatically mailed to voters in the primaries.
People want easy and safe voting-- as Hogan had allowed in the Maryland primaries and which worked safely. As Chair of the National Governors Association, Hogan had a chance to establish a national precedent in Maryland in the general election. Sadly, he's now resigned himself to be Trump's acolyte.
In lieu of actually instituting comprehensive mail voting by November, Maryland Governor Larry Hogan has approved dwindling Maryland's polling centers down to 360, despite the state having 1800 polling precincts.
Despite Maryland allowing for early, and no-excuse absentee voting, they still lack the primaries' system in which a ballot was mailed to each registered voter, which everyone can then mail in without having to risk COVID.
Had Hogan insisted on instilling mail-in ballots, perhaps more governors and even Congress would have followed his lead and taken swift action.
While this decision to kneecap mail voting may not make a significant impact on Maryland's presidential race, it sets a worrying example of state governors who are willing to cave to Trump's demands and not institute comprehensive voting reform. Moreover, it could influence the Congressional Race for Maryland's 1st district, which will feature Republican Incumbent Andrew Harris running against Democratic challenger , Mia Mason..
Following the gutting of The USPS carried out by Postmaster General Louis DeJoy, a major Trump donor, mail has been arriving later and ballot sorting machines have been dismantled or moved. Allowing Maryland to continue without a mail ballot system makes Hogan complicit in collaborating with Trump to sabotage our democracy.
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