I have voted in every single election (federal, state and local), since I became eligible to vote 52 years ago.

When I was 8½ months pregnant, 35 years ago, I had to physically present myself at the Portland City Clerk’s Office and prove why I needed to vote absentee rather than on Election Day. I explained that my due date was Election Day. Three clerks had to look me over before determining that I had a valid reason be allowed to vote early. I was in the hospital on Election Day 1984.

Today, early voting has become very easy and the norm for many. Unfortunately, an unintended consequence is that those who vote early miss the benefit of late-breaking news, like their candidate dropped out or other news that might have changed their vote.

I urge lawmakers to reconsider early voting, except for those who can demonstrate they are posted overseas (the military, Foreign Service, a job posting, etc.) or are out of the country on Election Day (plane tickets, etc.). Or to make voting easier, rather than early voting, change Election Day to a Saturday and make special provision for those who demonstrate they must work on Election Day.

Anne Pringle


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