The Ballot Box Battle

Foster City Ballot Drop Box

Anila Ray

Foster City Ballot Drop Box

Anila Ray, Journalist/ Editor

America is a democracy, and because of this, people ages eighteen and greater can vote for our leaders. This year, American citizens all over the country are casting their votes for the presidential election. This year, the main candidates are former Vice President Joe Biden and the current president, Donald Trump. According to an article from First Post, Mr. Trump said, “The biggest risk that we have is mail-in ballots. It’s much easier for them to forge ballots and send them in, it’s much easier for them to cheat with universal mail-in ballots.” But while he speculates about the danger of mail-in ballot meddling, his supporters are the ones who are threatening the honesty of our election.

 

This year, many fake ballot drops have turned up around Los Angeles and Fresno, according to a New York Times article. “To the average voter, they are virtually indistinguishable from drop-off sites sanctioned by the state, which are governed by strict regulations intended to prevent the partisan manipulation of ballots,” it said. Though you are allowed to have other people deliver your ballot for you, as the Republican’s claim they’re doing, the ballot boxes were “deceptively labeled ‘official’ drop boxes.” This led to the conclusion that the boxes were placed to trick voters and are unlawful since many people didn’t knowingly give their ballots over to the Republicans. 

 

“… Republicans are well within their right to collect ballots in this manner,” Republican Senator Melissa Melendez stated, according to a U.S. News article, even though the drop boxes were deceptive to voters, and there is a law against meddling with the election. Later in the article, it was written that a Democrat spokeswomen of Orange County, Rachel Potucek, expressed her concern and was “worried they [the Republicans] could target Democratic areas with boxes to suppress votes.”

 

When being interviewed for a CNN news report, California’s Secretary of State, Alex Padilla, told the reporters that tricking the voters is “wrong no matter who is doing it.”

 

There is a lot of controversy between the Democrats and Republicans on the legality of the fake boxes, so a CNN election law analyst named Rick Hasen said that “Whether or not it is technically legal, it’s [the unidentifiable fake ballot boxes] extremely problematic for voters,” according to a CNN Politics article. Although California state officials told the Republicans to stop the ballot box program, the article also states that “[the]‘Ballot harvesting program will continue,’ California Republican Party spokesman Hector Barajas said in a statement to CNN.”

 

In the  Los Angeles Daily News, an article was written on how to make sure your ballot was delivered to the correct spots. While giving further details on how to find and identify real ballot drops, they also suggested other ways to vote, such as by mail. 

 

As a democracy, the leaders in America are chosen by the people. If the Republicans intend to mess with the ballots, that right is illegally snatched from our country’s citizens. As noted in the U.S News, Alex Padilla said, “Our interest is in protecting the integrity of this election,” which is something every American should be working to achieve.

 

 

 

Sources:

https://www.firstpost.com/world/experts-debunk-trumps-claims-about-susceptibility-of-mail-in-ballots-to-tampering-childrens-immunity-to-covid-19-8687081.html

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/12/us/politics/california-gop-drop-boxes.html

https://www.cnn.com/2020/10/14/politics/california-republicans-ballot-drop-boxes-cease-and-desist/index.html

https://www.usnews.com/news/best-states/california/articles/2020-10-12/california-officials-say-unofficial-ballot-boxes-are-illegal

https://www.dailynews.com/2020/10/13/with-fake-ballot-drop-off-boxes-popping-up-in-la-county-heres-how-to-get-to-the-real-ones/