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Letter to the editor: Securing integrity of elections |
Letters to the Editor

Letter to the editor: Securing integrity of elections

| Saturday, December 15, 2018 10:03 a.m

Letter-writer Gregory D. Grabiak ( “Let poll volunteers work in shifts,” Nov. 30, TribLIVE) means well, but that’s not the issue. I’ve worked the polls with other volunteers making this commitment each election. I’ve previously worked outside of my precinct because of a need elsewhere, and this was a sacrifice shared by the workers in my home precinct due to my absence.

Headlines from Florida, Arizona and North Carolina should make everyone appreciate what we have; it is not by chance. “Virtual lockdown” may seem unnecessary, but it’s important to the integrity of the process. Volunteers you encounter when voting have one goal — to ensure your vote counts. So, too, do spouses and family making a lunch run, or bringing box dinners. The burden is not the time commitment, but the shortage of others — especially younger citizens — willing to help maintain that integrity.

Unlike politics and politicians, it’s about accountability on behalf of the electorate. We are the electorate. Everyone believes they are entitled to voice an opinion, but having your vote count requires a higher degree of civic responsibility. Not yet eligible to vote, letter-writer Nayyar Ahmed ( “Thankful for right to vote,” Dec. 4, TribLIVE) already understands the “blessing and joy”.

Westmoreland County officials provide excellent training and support for poll workers. It’s easy to work with those experienced if willing to volunteer. Contrary to the governor’s mandate, our existing machines work just fine, and expensive new machines will be useless without those willing to give of their time each Election Day.

Joe Schmidt

Lower Burrell

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