Voting by mail is just fine

There is a great hullabaloo these days about voting by mail and the claim is made that this system is rife with fraud. I’m a Pennsylvania boy, born and bred, now retired in southern Oregon where voting by mail was tested at the county level in 1981 and adopted for all elections in 1998. Based on my experience, there is no reason for anyone back home to be nervous about mail-in voting. It works just fine, has many advantages, and fraud is extremely rare. Please consider the following:

  • Voting by mail is more convenient. I can take several days to study the ballot.
  • In Oregon it is cheaper than in-person voting by about three million dollars/year (in 1998).
  • Participation is high. In 2000 80% of registered voters participated.
  • It does not favor one party over another.
  • Fraud is extremely rare. The Heritage Foundation reports that from 2000-2019 there were 15 cases of voter fraud in Oregon out of 15,476,519 votes cast (0.000097%) or 0.79 cases/year.

A 2003 survey by the University of Oregon showed that voting by mail was preferred by Oregonians 81% to 19% by both Republicans (76%) and Democrats (85%).

We have paper ballots so a recount is feasible and votes are counted by standalone computers so it is unlikely that the Russians can fool with them.

What’s not to like? You can vote by mail with confidence. All the claims about fraud are nothing but political posturing.

Steve Radcliffe

Grants Pass, Oregon