130

The Democrats strongly supported voting by mail due to Covid-19, to avoid risk of infection, while Trump downplayed the pandemic. ScienceDaily: COVID-19 opens a partisan gap on voting by mail This is a case in Texas where Democrats attempted to extend mail voting: https://www.cnbc.com/2020/06/26/coronavirus-supreme-court-rejects-universal-vote-by-mail-in-...


122

Donald Trump spent months making statements, to the media and on Twitter, along the lines of: Mail-in ballots are very dangerous. There’s tremendous fraud involved and tremendous illegality. (source) It's hardly surprising that Republican voters decided to take him at his word and not trust mail-in ballots.


89

Not being run by the government will not make the postal service "consistently profitable". In itself it will change nothing. What could make it profitable is to make some kind of sacrifice: either we decide that everybody must pay more for it, or that people who live alone in the mountains will stop receiving letters. These are sacrifices that a ...


88

This looks to be a data entry error either by the Election Administration and Voting Survey administrators, or by the county-level respondents to the EAVS, followed by ABC reporting the erroneous data without error checking. The issue can be seen if we download the data files from which ABC's graphic draws - these can be found here. If we look at the two ...


61

I think the other answers are correct in that both of these are factors: Trump and some of the Republican leadership (repeatedly) slamming postal voting Republicans being less afraid of Covid-19 and thus less inclined to socially distance (also reflected in some of Trump's comments on the pandemic and his personal example) Alas answers (and comments) have ...


59

This answer is tainted by my German experience and views, but I expect many instances of it to apply to the US, too. With the traditional concept of an election day, all people have the opportunity to make up their mind up to that very day. With postal voting, the vote needs to be posted some time before to make it to the counting station in time. Now ...


42

While the other answers address legitimate, valid reasoning why voting-by-mail has some hurdles to overcome before it can become a national policy, this decision is ultimately made by legislators, and thus their motives are the primary drivers of what becomes law. In 2012, the Republican party was at a crossroads. The old-guard branch of the GOP, as ...


41

The Trump campaign did a lot to demonize mail in voting with accusations that there was a lot of fraud with it. This along with the downplaying of covid among his supporters likely led to a lower mail in voting turnout and higher in person turnout. There was a concern among Republicans that the campaign against mail in voting would cost votes in the long run....


38

According to a June 2020 investigation published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the imposition of a universal vote-by-mail policy, whereby every voter would be sent a ballot to complete in advance of the election, would have no effect on either party's share of turnout or vote share. The study does, however, find that the policy ...


35

This is a clarification of a regulation that may have been misunderstood in the past. If the signature matches that held on file then the vote can be counted, whether the signature crosses the seal of the envelope or not. Florida does require mailed votes to be signed by the voter. The signature is put on the envelope. And the envelope is printed in such ...


34

There are several reasons why the post office isn't privatized. For starters, in the U.S. the Post office is an enumerated power of congress, they essentially have full control over locations, allowed routes, and general operations. A private company would probably not ever want to have congressional approval for any material changes. Another reason not to ...


31

I'd like to predicate this by saying that it is, by definition, impossible to have completely accurate statistics on incidents of something like voter fraud, since voter fraud done "well" is undetected. I'll also use some data taken from the Heritage Foundation, since they have conducted the majority of the studies on voting fraud. The Heritage Foundation ...


23

No, the available evidence suggests that neither party would benefit overall. From FiveThirtyEight: Bottom line: By making it a little easier to vote, voting by mail probably increases the likelihood of the marginal Democratic voter engaging in the process. (Though younger and lower-income voters, who tend to vote at lower rates, also tend to not take ...


23

@Jan's answer is a good one, though I would be a bit more a fundamentalist about it. A postal vote is not a secret ballot and (inter alia) contravenes the Universal Declaration on Human Rights, the American Convention on Human Rights and many other agreements. You must be UNABLE to prove how you voted In the UK, the US and elsewhere ballot secrecy was a ...


23

In the U.S., the rate at which mail in ballots were invalidated in 2020 was about 1.0% and it was about 1.4% in 2016 and 2018. This is a somewhat tricky comparison, however, because the U.S. involves 51 different sets of laws governing when mail in ballots are valid, and there is wide variation from state to state (as shown at the link above) in invalidity ...


22

There are several reasons why the post office isn't profitable and they are all out of the control of the post office itself. It should also be noted that the post office is self funding. Honestly when you look at the history and realize expenses have been put on the postal service because it was to profitable the problem should become clear. https://www....


21

Persons who voted for Joe Biden over Donald Trump tend to be younger, paid less, and more in favor of masks/less likely of voting in person during a pandemic. Younger people tend to have less schedule flexibility as they are still working their way up in the corporate world (or are working non-9-to-5 hours in the retail/service sectors). This would lead them ...


20

As a resident of Washington state, I’m a big fan of mail-in ballots. I know that you didn’t ask for upsides, but the fact that you can take the time to sit down to research and consider the issues and candidates, rather than rushing to fill out your ballot in a crowded public school gym, makes it much easier to be an informed voter. Still, there are some ...


18

It's pretty simple, actually: Election day is "the Tuesday next after the first Monday in the month of November", and people have the right to cast their votes up to the closing of polls on that day. Now, this differs based on State law. Some states do require ballots to be received by Election day, while others only require them to be postmarked ...


17

The simple answer is that there are no facts to support the idea that mail-in-voting would lead to higher instances of fraud. On the contrary, states that have experimented with mail-in-voting have not experienced an increase of fraud as reported by BBC, Brookings,Oregon Fox News, Brennan, NBS-Oregon live, Oregon Secretary of State, NPR- Washington Secretary ...


17

Yes, the Election Administration and Voting Survey - conducted biennially since 2004 by the Election Assistance Commission - collects this data. The 2016 report can be found here. In particular: Approximately 80.1 percent of absentee ballots that were transmitted to voters were returned and processed, with 1.4 percent of transmitted ballots returned as ...


17

Does a mail-in ballot stay valid if the voter died between mailing it validly and the election date? For some states, yes. For others, no. What If an Absentee Voter Dies Before Election Day?, October 20, 2020 What happens when an eligible voter casts an absentee ballot and then passes away before Election Day? This question comes up more and more, as ...


16

There have been certainly been proposals in the U.S. to privatize the postal service, mainly from the "small government"/libertarian-leaning faction of the Republican party. (The Democratic party tends to be skeptical of privatization in general.) But none of them have caught on yet, and I think the reason is very simple: voters don't want a change....


13

That depends on the laws in each state. In some states mail in ballots can be counted as they come in but in others they can't be counted until the polls close. I have included a couple of states for reference but the article lists what is expected in all 50 states and the District of Columbia https://projects.fivethirtyeight.com/election-results-timing/ ...


12

I tracked down the following explanation in a Washington Post article: Why do so many more Democrats than Republicans plan to vote by mail? One clear explanation of the growing gap has been well documented: Partisans often take cues from their party’s elites, as scholarship has long found. When Trump criticizes voting by mail, as he frequently does, ...


11

I think it depends on your definition. Its trivial to see that mail in ballots make it easier to do vote selling or vote coercion. The party doing the buying or coercion can watch you vote and watch you put it in the mailbox. They cannot do so in an anonymous voting booth. So, from that perspective, you can argue that yes indeed it can increase voter ...


11

This is usually to avoid the leaking of any partial vote tallies before the election, which might have the effect of unfairly encouraging or discouraging turnout of voters favoring one candidate or another.


10

Voter coercion is a federal crime in the US code U.S. Code › Title 18 › Part I › Chapter 29 › § 594: Whoever intimidates, threatens, coerces, or attempts to intimidate, threaten, or coerce, any other person for the purpose of interfering with the right of such other person to vote or to vote as he may choose, or of causing such other person to vote for, ...


9

Coming a bit late here and it's already clear that there are many arguments against postal voting and various combinations of those are likely to be the reason why one state or another has not switch to postal voting. On top of all the named reasons there is one concept - credibility. The election is not credible if the losing party can plausibly claim that ...


9

Mail-in voting is extremely popular among two groups that Republicans rely on: the military (who often need to vote from widely dispersed bases) and the elderly (who often find voting in person strenuous or difficult). As I remember, several of the GOP voting restriction bills try to split the difference by limiting mail-in to those select groups, trying by ...


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