- Pennsylvania State Senators
- United States of America
There are currently 31 other states that have an early voting option for its citizens, and it has worked well to provide more equitable access to the election process. It is time for Pennsylvania to empower its citizens, too.
Early voting makes it easier to vote, and this means more people exercise their right. Research by Curtis Gans, Director of the Committee for the Study of the American Electorate, shows that in the 11 states that had early voting in both 2002 and 2004, turnout increased by an aggregate average of 7.2 percentage points.
This measure will also simplify election administration for all of Pennsylvania's 67 counties by allowing more time to process ballots, lifting strain on voting systems that occurs on Election Day, eliminating serpentine election day lines, and reducing the number of poll workers needed while allowing more time for the poll workers who remain to become familiar with new or updated voting systems.
While the law currently provides protections for citizens to be excused from their work to vote on election day, for too many hard-working Pennsylvanians that is not realistic. Limited transportation, some occupations, family obligations, emergencies, or physical conditions can prevent voters from standing for an hour or more in line at their polling place on election days.
All citizens must have the opportunity to cast their ballot protected by our government.
I respectfully ask that you support the passage of this legislation because I believe it is necessary to support every citizen's right to vote by increasing access to this vital and most basic act of civic participation.