County Executive David Crowley
Op Ed

Voting Access Ensures All Voices Are Heard

A new bipartisan coalition is working to promote safe, reliable voting in Wisconsin.

By - Oct 9th, 2020 12:58 pm
Voters at South Division High School. Photo by Jeramey Jannene.

Voters at South Division High School. Photo by Jeramey Jannene.

Growing up in Milwaukee, I have seen the struggles that many of our communities face every day, and I know the joy of working together to conquer these challenges. As we continue to navigate this pandemic and look towards November, I know one thing is certain: We will get through this by working together.

The United States is full of diverse perspectives and experiences. By ensuring people have access to a safe voting plan, we are equivocally making sure everyone is able to have their unique voice heard.

With this in mind, I am excited to be a part of the VoteSafe WI Coalition. Together, we are dedicated to ensuring that voting in Wisconsin is safe, and that all eligible Wisconsinites, regardless of where they come from, can exercise their right to vote as we head toward Election Day in November.

The pandemic has affected everyone regardless of party, and we will get through this if we are united. Accordingly, I am proud to be a part of a bipartisan coalition made up of principled leaders who support a set of principles all Wisconsinites can agree upon.

I’m honored to be joined by our entire coalition which includes co-chair Attorney General Josh Kaul, co-chair former Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen, former Gov. Scott McCallum; former Congressman Reid Ribble, Tom Petri, and Scott Klug; Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett; State Treasurer Sarah Godlewski; State Sen. Kathy Bernier; former State Sen. Gary Goyke; and former Democratic Party of Wisconsin Chair Mike Tate.

VoteSafe WI also includes great partner organizations like WE CAN VOTE, the Millennial Action Project, and the Milwaukee Bucks. With the help of these hardworking and passionate individuals and organizations, our coalition is making great strides to amplify our message that all eligible voters in Wisconsin have access to their ballot this November.

We need to maintain the ability to allow Wisconsinites to vote in-person on Election Day, if they choose. We are also working to educate voters on where to find their polling locations and what forms of identification they need. VoteSafe WI is supporting local clerks and volunteers as they put in place measures to ensure a safe voting experience during these unprecedented times.

To put less pressure on local clerks, voting absentee is just as safe and secure as voting in-person, and it can be done while you are sitting at your kitchen table. The Wisconsin Elections Commission has run a program that sent applications for absentee ballots to almost 2.7 million registered Wisconsin voters. Absentee ballots are a safe, secure form of voting that has been a viable option for more than 100 years. The only flaw is the ballot does not come with an “I Voted” sticker (However, many social media platforms allow you to update your status to proudly promote that you voted).

Together, we will ensure that no person is forced to choose between their health and their ballot. For more information on how you can cast your vote this election season, check out the Wisconsin Elections Commission website:

David Crowley, Milwaukee County Executive.

Categories: Op-Ed, Politics

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