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So, as Sandy was bearing down upon us here in Northern Virginia, this past Saturday my wife and I decided it would be a good idea to go ahead and get into the early voting scene, just in case. I look online and find the polling place for "in person absentee voting" and, thinking it's the same thing, head on out to vote. I get there, get in, there's a dozen or so people there (with a constant flow) and get my absentee form thingie. One thing it has on it... codes for why you're voting early. (???) I look through this list of codes... there's nothing that's really covering why I'm there... because I want to.

So I ask.

Turns out there's no actual early voting in Virginia. The lady next to me quips that "They don't encourage you to vote in Virginia". The poll workers mention that you're not allowed to early absentee vote just because you want to. Fortunately, the poll workers were not of the mind that you shouldn't vote. I jokingly mention that "You know, now that I think of it, I just might be in Florida on that day". So following some good-natured "You look like you could use a vacation" and similar smiling comments, I voted. My wife shortly after (we have kids, so split it up) did the same for similar reasons.

So vote Virginia. You can do it, even early if you try. It matters now more than ever.

Originally posted to SBParrothead on Wed Oct 31, 2012 at 04:34 AM PDT.

Also republished by Virginia Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Good for YOU! (8+ / 0-)

    See Virginians, it's easy!    I'm going today.  

    Unclutch your pearls. Get off of that fainting couch. GOTV! We got this! Obama/Biden 2012.

    by Zinger in VA on Wed Oct 31, 2012 at 04:46:23 AM PDT

  •  Is it perjury to check off (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    agrenadier, AreDeutz

    a different box saying why you wanted to vote early?  Probably not.  You're not impersonating anyone.  You're not voting illegally.

    Good for you!

    www.tapestryofbronze.com

    by chloris creator on Wed Oct 31, 2012 at 05:16:24 AM PDT

  •  Interesting the SBE declared on Friday (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    brooklyns finest, AreDeutz

    To allow for early absentee voting because of the storm....but that information was not told to the poll workers at the locations...

    Takin it to the Streets! time to GOTV

    by totallynext on Wed Oct 31, 2012 at 05:19:16 AM PDT

  •  Additionally the hours have been extended (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BasharH, oortdust, Aspe4, night cat

    In NOVA Fairfax in person absentee locations for the remainder.

    Wednesday to friday12:00 to 8:00
    Saturday 8:00 to 5:00

    Here are the locations for fairfax county

    Takin it to the Streets! time to GOTV

    by totallynext on Wed Oct 31, 2012 at 05:25:43 AM PDT

    •  Sorry link below (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      kareylou, oortdust

      Takin it to the Streets! time to GOTV

      by totallynext on Wed Oct 31, 2012 at 05:26:43 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Here is the ballot for Fairfax county (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      oortdust

      Ballot

      Hmm... I think I might just have to vote today too.

      Hey does anyone know anything about the constitutional amendments and the bonds. I'm just seeing them for the first time. After a quick first read I am inclined to vote "Yes" on all of them, but I now know how a low information undecided voter feels. I'm really just guessing on thoses.  

      •  Yes, I do (0+ / 0-)

        The VA Democratic Party recommends a no vote on the eminent domain amendment.  I'm not computer-savvy enough to embed a link, but the WaPo had a letter a couple of weeks ago written by Scott Surovel and Toddy Puller explaining the reasons to vote against.  They are recommending a yes vote on extending the period in which a veto session can be held (#2).  This year the period coincided with Passover and caused some problems for the Jewish House and Senate members.  The amendment expands the period by a week to aleviate this problem in the future.

        Tshirt seen at the University of Chicago - Front "That's fine in practice" Back "But how does it work in theory?"

        by Oakton Mom on Wed Oct 31, 2012 at 07:57:56 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Vote 'yes' on the eminent domain thing, unless (0+ / 0-)

          you want to allow the legislature to decide when it is convenient to take land for whatever purpose they want.

          Seriously.

          The statute that governs eminent domain is a law passed in 2007. Since its a law and not part of the state constitution, the law can be revised or nullified by the legislature. Passing this amendment puts the protection of property in the state constitution, out of reach of the legislature.

          Surovell and Puller are state legislators. Power demands power you know.

        •  Found the WaPo link. Thanks (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          totallynext

          Property rights amendment would put an onerous burden on local government

          Yep that article changed my mind:

          1. It enshrines business special interests in the constitution. Would be hard to undo.
          2. Requires businesses to be compensated for lost profit even though their property could ultimately be more valuable due to the construction.
          3. General concept of amendment already in existing law
          4. Could make future infrastructure improvements prohibitively expensive

          •  Sorry to hear that (0+ / 0-)

            I'd already seen the article, and I just don't think it is well reasoned. Item 1 is just to get the Democratic base riled up. Items 2 and 4 are pure speculation. That's all window dressing though.

            Item 3 is the key....because the restriction is in state law and not part of the constitution, it can be modified at will by the legislature. Concerned about business interests trumping personal? Who's most likely to influence the legislature...?

            •  Unfortunately (0+ / 0-)

              The language is loose enough in what would be put in the state constitution that the legislature will be able to make that determination anyways (who do you think is going to determine "true" public use?).  Keeping it as a law would allow citizen groups to fight it more effectively than if it is in the constitution.  That is a basic fact, not just "...to get the Democratic base riled up..." - please see your local lawyer if you don't understand why.

              However, at the end of the day, any arguments around it is moot.  It sounds too good and the average voter will vote for it no matter what.

              "The truth is rarely pure and never simple." - Oscar Wilde

              by unbound on Fri Nov 02, 2012 at 10:15:04 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  those are my great Representatives (0+ / 0-)

          Delegate Scott Surovell - 44th District
          Senator Toddy Puller - 36th VA Senate

          Actually - im now under 30th VA Senate (Adam Ebbin)

          Takin it to the Streets! time to GOTV

          by totallynext on Wed Oct 31, 2012 at 10:46:27 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  similar story here in alexandria (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    oortdust, agrenadier

    i think my wife has a "legit" reason - i'm in a "gray area" that i may have to explore :)

    i wanna bank my vote before tuesday

    Colorado has a much higher GDP than Utah because it is culturally superior

    by memofromturner on Wed Oct 31, 2012 at 05:47:42 AM PDT

    •  just head down to 132 North Royal! (0+ / 0-)

      Or Beatley Library. They're not being overly fussy about the reasons. In Northern Virginia, you say "commute," and everyone knows that is one of the biggest variables in a work day.

      Life is a shipwreck. But we must not forget to sing in the lifeboats. — Voltaire

      by agrenadier on Wed Oct 31, 2012 at 06:41:28 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Work hours plus your commute (4+ / 0-)

    are always a good reason. It's what I plan to use, even though I typically vote around 7am before work. Happy early voting, everyone!

  •  One man one vote... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    angelajean, agrenadier

    Frankly, I think everyone should be able to vote by mail like Oregon. I have no problem with telling the board of elections anything if that's the hoop they make you jump through to cast your ballot, and you prefer to cast your vote that way. Besides, voting early makes a lot more sense to me than waiting to Election day when anything can happen. Why wait to have your say?

  •  I'm Also a Virginia Voter (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    angelajean

    and was wondering if we should start a movement to get the General Assembly to enact early voting without the voter having to give a reason. I realize I could easily concoct a reason but I want to be as honest as possible and I don't meet any of the requirements for absentee voting.

    "The problem with posting quotes off the Internet is you never know if they're genuine."--Gen. George Washington at the Battle of Gettysburg, February 30, 1908

    by Aspe4 on Wed Oct 31, 2012 at 06:23:33 AM PDT

  •  not really! (0+ / 0-)

    I have been working the absentee voting place in Old Town, Alex., and a lot of people have been voting, just because they want to. Of course, they use a code, such as the commute, work priorities, travel, etc. and the polling people aren't asking or grilling. They're really just interested in getting you in and out, because the lines are long!

    Life is a shipwreck. But we must not forget to sing in the lifeboats. — Voltaire

    by agrenadier on Wed Oct 31, 2012 at 06:35:42 AM PDT

  •  I live in MO and I knew this. EV should (0+ / 0-)

    not be affected by Sandy as long as power is restored by the weekend.

    Everyone Chill the fuck out! I got this - unknown but credited to Barack Obama

    by natedogg265 on Wed Oct 31, 2012 at 06:42:30 AM PDT

  •  . (0+ / 0-)

    My wife and I voted in Stafford County on Saturday.  We both decided that we were going to be on vacation next Tuesday.  :-)

    Unfortunately,  info about voting on Saturday in Stafford was basically non-existent.  I read about Fairfax on here and decided to just stop by.  Glad it worked out (very low turnout, though).

  •  Absentee Issues... (0+ / 0-)

    My oldest is in college out of state, and, interestingly enough, is having issues (that at this point won't be ironed out in time) getting his absentee ballot.  He mailed in his form more than a month ago, and faxed it again early last week.

    Kind of suspicious that, being a college student, his form has been "inadvertently" lost since a college student is far more likely to vote Democratic.  Virginia is still (to my knowledge) stuck in a statistical tie, so every vote will count out here and my county is controlled by Republicans.

    "The truth is rarely pure and never simple." - Oscar Wilde

    by unbound on Fri Nov 02, 2012 at 09:57:50 AM PDT

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