elections 2020, absentee ballot issues, voting options
The author writes, “Voting during a contentious presidential election and a pandemic is more than a little overwhelming. Like many Americans, you may have designed a plan to vote by absentee ballot months ago ... you submitted your information and waited for the ballot to arrive in the mail, but it never did. You have a few options.” Photo credit: OSCE Parliamentary Assembly / Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0)

What Happens if an Early Voter Dies Before Election Day ; Whale Sculpture Stops Train From Plunge in Netherlands ; and More Picks 11/2

What Happens if an Early Voter Dies Before Election Day (Dan)

The author writes, “Amber Pflughoeft beamed with pride as she filled out her ballot for the first time last month. A 20-year-old who’d been fighting bone cancer for a decade, she was fascinated with politics, her mother Tiffany Pflughoeft remembered. And after spending the last midterm election in the hospital following a bone marrow transplant, she was determined to vote this year. But just a few days after she mailed in her ballot, Amber’s condition took a sudden turn for the worse. She went back to the hospital and died in late September. Now, her ballot will be thrown out under Wisconsin election law.” 

Federal Judges Claim It’s Unconstitutional for States to Protect Voting Rights (Dana)

The author writes, “The Supreme Court consistently upholds states’ voter suppression schemes — stringent ID laws, extreme partisan gerrymandering, racist redistricting, limits on voting by mail — despite clear evidence of disenfranchisement. The court has rolled back long-standing federal protections for equal suffrage by dismantling the Voting Rights Act’s most important provision, spurring mass poll closures, voter purges, and cuts to early voting that disproportionately affect minority communities. SCOTUS did all this in the name of states’ rights, shielding states’ election laws from the overreaching arm of the federal government.”

Former Trump Official Warns of ‘Coward’ President’s Corruption and How the GOP Will Help Him ‘Cheat’ on Election Day (Russ)

From Raw Story: “This Election Day has the potential to be epic. The repudiation of Donald Trump will bring unprecedented challenges to the results. Undoubtedly, Trump’s response to defeat will be dramatic and unsettling and anti-democratic. We all need to be prepared with a heightened sense of anticipation and watchfulness. Anthony Scaramucci is a lifelong Republican and former White House Director of Communications. He has had a front row seat to Donald Trump and his presidency. We asked Scaramucci a number of questions about Trump and his response to defeat on Election Day. His thoughts are both revealing and frightening.”

‘Wretched Human Being for President’: How the Spokane Paper’s Bizarre Plug for Trump Revealed a Hard Truth (Reader Steve)

From the Seattle Times: “The problem wasn’t just that the paper endorsed Trump. It’s the argument the editorial made. ‘Donald Trump is a bully and a bigot,’ it started out. Yes, it went on, it’s true, Trump panders to racists. He endlessly tweets conspiracy theories. He denies climate change. … He’s also ‘a wretched human being,’ the editorial remarkably concluded, adding: ‘We recommend voting for him anyway.’ …  Some Spokanians were disgusted that a candidate could be a bigot and endorsed in the same breath. Considering our history, shouldn’t bigotry be disqualifying?”

For Vampire Bats, Social Distancing While Sick Comes Naturally (Mili)

From ScienceDaily: “Researchers gave wild vampire bats a substance that activated their immune system and made them feel sick for several hours, and then returned the bats to their roost. A control group of bats received a placebo. Data on the behavior of these bats was transmitted to scientists by custom-made ‘backpack’ computers that were glued to the animals’ backs, recording the vampire bats’ social encounters. Compared to control bats in their hollow-tree home, sick bats interacted with fewer bats, spent less time near others and were overall less interactive with individuals that were well-connected with others in the roost.”

Whale Sculpture Stops Train From Plunge in Netherlands (Dana)

The authors write, “A train that went careening over the end of elevated tracks in the Netherlands on Monday was left teetering about 30 feet above the ground. But no one was injured or killed in the accident — thanks to a sculpture of a whale’s tail that stopped the train from plunging. ‘It’s like the scene of a Hollywood movie,’ said Ruud Natrop, a spokesman for safety in the Rotterdam-Rijnmond area, where the accident occurred. ‘Thank God the tail was there.’”


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