All eligible voters should
get to cast their ballot
Re: Oct. 28 article, "Some voters are unable to cast early ballots in person."
An article in the Oct. 28 Statesman tells of some states who think voting should be open to everyone eligible.
Gov. Abbott's statewide restriction on drop-off locations for ballots by mail is just pandering to a perceived voter base. Kentucky has a Democratic governor and Republican secretary of state who worked together "offering absentee voting to anyone who feels at risk," and New Hampshire made a temporary change to state law offering the same option.
When are we, the People, going to stop offering excuses for this clear restriction on the constitutional right to vote? Our governor should be doing everything in his power to ensure that all eligible voters get to cast their ballot.
It's not too late to do the right thing as these other states did maybe then we can say that we are "The Great State of Texas" with true pride.
Ray Arnold, Austin
GOP efforts to restrict
voting are problematic
Re: Oct. 27 commentary, "Want to change the nation? Start with state politics."
The American-Statesman did a service by running this column. We face an election like no past one. The COVID-19 pandemic is the major problem, but Republican efforts to restrict voting are a close second.
Republicans assume their loyal base will overcome these problems, but less-determined voters who tend to support Democrats will not.
In August, Trump said he opposed additional funding for the U.S. Postal Service because, "If they don’t get those two items [funding and ballots], that means you can’t have universal mail-in voting because they’re not equipped to have it." At the state level, Gov. Abbott limits counties to one place to drop off completed ballots.
Gina Fant-Simmons’ column shows the importance of studying for and voting in down-ballot races. That’ll be harder since the Republican-controlled legislature eliminated straight-ticket voting. They hope many voters will look at the long ballot, vote for president and leave other races to others.
Jim Davis, Austin
Questioning GOP motives
for putting ballots at risk
Re: Oct. 29 article, "GOP petition seeks to void Harris County votes."
I read the October 29 article "GOP petition seeks to void Harris County votes" in disbelief. The practice approved by the Texas Secretary of State allows voters with disabilities to drive through voting areas in Harris County one at a time where they present a voter ID, sign a roster and use a sanitized voting machine.
I write as a retired occupational therapist who worked with people with disabilities, so I feel this voting modification is necessary and valid. I also write as a wife who helped her husband on hospice vote for his last time.
I agree with the spokesman for the Democratic Party who says the petition was filed by "cowards."‘ Remember their names: Hotze, Hemphill, Champion and Toth. They say they are the pro-life party, but their actions putting over 100,000 ballots at risk shows who they really are.
Elizabeth Crosby, Austin
No matter the election
results, let kindness win
Someone said that these last days leading up to the election feels like waiting for a biopsy result. I think that's a perfect analogy no matter what side you’re on.
Each of us is terrified that the results will be "malignant" from our perspective because that likely means years of horrible, debilitating treatment ... or worse. At the same time, while we’d feel great relief if the results are "benign," the whole country will still have this huge, painful open wound from where they removed the tumor...and the scars may never go away.
And on top of all that, the results might be "inconclusive" for a very long time. But when the results do come in, good, bad or inconclusive, let’s all try to be kind, loving and supportive of each other, no matter how we voted. That’s the only way we will heal.
Pat Grigadean, Austin