ShareThis Page
State voters may get early ballot option |

State voters may get early ballot option

The Associated Press
| Sunday, December 14, 2008 12:00 a.m

Several state lawmakers plan to introduce legislation that would allow voters to cast their ballots before elections, a move that proponents say would make it more convenient to vote and help avoid long lines at the polls.

“We want to make it more flexible for working families, for senior citizens, and for avoiding long lines on Election Day,” said Rep. Eugene DePasquale, D-York. “We need to make it easier for qualified voters to vote in Pennsylvania.”

Early voting is allowed in more than 30 other states, including Arizona, California, Colorado and North Carolina.

Rep. Scott Conklin, D-Centre, said early voting in other states helped ease lines in the last presidential election.

“Advance voting has grown in nationwide popularity and value,” he said. “Unfortunately, in Pennsylvania, while absentee ballots are permitted under a limited set of circumstances, advance voting is not an option. We should make voting more convenient for those whose schedule or circumstances present a challenge to getting to the polls on Election Day.”

Absentee ballots are available to voters who will be of town, incapacitated, or hospitalized on Election Day.

Rep. Mike McGeehan, D-Philadelphia, plans to sponsor a related bill that would expand absentee ballots.

Charlie Gerow, a political consultant with Harrisburg-based Quantum Communications, said he thinks early voting will grow in popularity. But he said it carries potential drawbacks if done too early.

“Suppose an important issue developed late in a campaign, one that would impact the voting, such as a financial meltdown occurring just before an election, and people had already voted,” he said.

Categories: News
TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.