Over the past several weeks I’ve been sharing Voter Updates with friends and family on my personal distribution list with the intention of getting the world out about Voting rights and Protection. The Eclectique Citizen is now part of this blog with the intention of making the information more available. I do verify web links etc. before posting.

Update: Re the Straight Party or Ticket Voting information. What is reflected below applies to NC only. Best to contact your state Election Board to download or request a sample ballot and ask about this feature. Or check this link for the National Conference of State Legislatures. Not all states have the Straight Party Voting option. The link will tell you more.

Friends and Family.

We’re in the final week of what can best be described as one of the most historic and important elections of a lifetime. The elections of 2000 and 2004 have produced much more information about voting suppression and voting rights.

I’m one of those people who has trust issues with electronic or touch-screen voting. Call me old school, and yes, I still write paper checks. But there’s something about having physical evidence or a paper trail that gives me a sense of legitimacy. Here is a site where you can find out if your state has electronic voting or both electronic and paper voting options.

Early voting is discovering some of the voter machine “glitches.” Nevertheless, if you have any trouble voting (early or on Nov. 4) or suspect any kind of problem at your polling place that prevents you or any person from casting a ballot, call 1-866-OUR VOTE (1-866-687-8683). Add this as a speed dial on your cell phone.

TO DO THIS WEEK (Recommendations):– If you have not voted yet (early voting), verify your voter status and location of your poll – www.canivote.org. Visit www.866ourvote.org to find your State Board of Elections.

– Assist relatives, seniors, and friends verify their status and their options re voting early or absentee. Download or get a copy of a sample ballot and review the ballot with them (review it for yourself).

Remember my Recommendation re the STRAIGHT PARTY VOTE. If you have a STRAIGHT PARTY VOTE ballot, skip the Straight Party section and take the extra time to mark each contest separate starting with the PRESIDENT/VICE PRESIDENT box. A STRAIGHT PARTY VOTE does not apply to the Presidential election; only local/state elections. Other voter rights groups are recommending this as well.

– Inform your employer or staff when you plan to vote and allow yourself 3-4 hours in case of long lines during peak hours – usually early morning. You have the legal right to take time off to vote. For managers and employers, I’d suggest including this as an agenda item in your next staff meeting re staff time, leave policy, and coverage on November 4.

– If you don’t have a state issued i.d. (driver’s or non-driver’s license), get one! If you have a relative or friend who doesn’t have one, and is registered to vote, be sure they get a state issued i.d. before November 4. It’s a good thing to have overall.

– Share this information.