Every morning, I “go for a walk” with my mother before work. Since we live in different parts of the state, the walk is done via cell phone, but it still gives us a chance to stay in touch and it gives me a reason to take a few steps before the day begins.
As I walked past several panels of candidates and proposals during a recent walk-and-talk, I reminded my mom to make sure she takes care of her mail-in ballot, because I know that she will be out of town for the August 28 primary election. 2. She thanked me and told me they had already taken care of it. And despite the fact that I don’t always agree with my parents’ political views, I’m glad their vote is counted.
I would be remiss if I did not express my gratitude for the 2018 Promote the Vote campaign, which made mail-in voting for no reason available to all Michigan voters. Due to Promote voting — and the 70 percent of Michigan voters who supported him — our state constitution now allows no reason absentee voting, automatic voter registration, and other measures that make it easier for everyone to vote. This “everything” is important. Mom and I may not agree on politics, but we both believe strongly in the power and integrity of the vote.
Voting should be easy. Voting must be secure. No matter which candidate you support, what neighborhood you live in, whether you live 20 km from your polling place (like my parents) or two blocks from your polling place (like me), you should be able to vote in a way that fits your work schedule, access to transportation, mobility issues, health, caregiving obligations, or anything else that might prevent you from voting on a specific day at a specific time.
As a proponent of voters being able to vote, I was pleased to see that on Monday, Promote the Vote 2022 announced it received 669,972 signatures – overwhelming support – for another positive constitutional amendment that would allow early in-person voting and ban harassment during voting.
This is great news for all voters, but especially rural voters, military voters and others who encountered obstacles at the polls. It would also require post-election audits to be conducted by state and local officials.
The Michigan League for Public Policy is an enthusiastic supporter of Promote voting since its inception, and our President and CEO, Monique Stanton, sits on the organization’s Board of Directors.
But first, back to those yard signs I passed this morning. We want to make sure you’re focused on your primary election, when deciding on important local funding for schools, libraries and public safety, and when determining who will be on your ballot in November. So as soon as you can, be sure to take a look at your sample primary ballot here so you can be ready to vote in the August 2 election.
Things might look different where you live this year now that Michigan’s Independent Redistricting Commission has updated state district maps. I was pretty familiar with the perspective of my previous state representative – she served my area for several years and has been part of the community for a long time. But I’m one of those people who woke up to a new neighborhood, and I have to say that I don’t know well the candidates who could end up representing me in November. Simply put, I have a lot of work to do before August 2.
But thanks to my bright and cultured colleagues in the League, my job has become easier.
League analysts developed a series of questions you can ask when you meet candidates at your doorstep, at in-person events or via email or phone. These questions are based on the League’s problem areas – things like health care, housing, fairness in the economy and the workplace, education, immigration, child welfare and more.
Questions make it easy to find out where your candidates stand on the things you value, and it’s also a great educational tool if you want to learn more (or help your candidates learn more) about the policies that matter to your community.
And on that note, I have to run. There’s a candidate on my doorstep (no kidding).
Get morning headlines delivered to your inbox