The dust has fallen on the 2020 election – in Vermont, meaning Every District has now announced its unofficial results in an election that saw more than 358,000 people vote in the state, thousands before election day
The state made significant changes to the way it conducted elections this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic Every registered voter received a ballot before the election and could mail or post it file before polling day Elections are administered by Vermont Secretary of State Jim Condos
Henry Epp from VPR spoke to Jim Condos Their conversation below has been condensed and edited for clarity
Henry Epp: So it was a completely different method of running an election than in previous years. And now that we’re on the other side of polling day, how do you think it went?
Jim Condos: I think it went really well It was pretty smooth We obviously broke our previous early and no-vote record, which was 95,000 in 2016 And this time we had over 260,000 who have effectively submitted their absent or early ballot
Learn more about RVP: « Kneeling in Absentee Ballots »: The Weeks Before Election Day with the Town Clerk of Williamstown
We haven’t heard of any reports of significant issues at polling stations or with postal ballots But I want to check this with you Have there been any notable issues in a part of the electoral process?
Not to our knowledge It just seems that there are always these questions every now and then, is this considered voter intimidation? You know, someone pulling over in a parking space with a banner on their car or something like that And, you know, candidates do too
So, you know, I would say, no there really was nothing We were monitoring it We were working with law enforcement, both federal and state partners, to just make sure everything was available so we could all know what was going on So I would say it was a pretty sweet election
And, you know, I know the media hate to hear it, but no news is good news
Right Well, I mean there have been a lot of changes, like I said, in the electoral process this year And that change to sending a ballot to every registered voter was temporary, spurred on by the pandemic Now that you’ve done it once in a general election, do you think this should be a permanent change in the way Vermont conducts elections?
So Henry this is actually a decision that the legislature will make, we will present them all the details, and in a briefing we will provide things like cost, which it costs us to do a lot. of people think that voting by mail costs less than voting in person, but it really isn’t, because you pay the postage in advance
We plan to meet with a diverse group of clerks to sort of go over and take stock of what happened, what happened that was good, what didn’t summer, any suggestions or recommendations for moving forward These are the things we’ll be looking at
Okay so you wouldn’t necessarily make a recommendation to the Legislature to decide whether or not to continue But it seems that generally this process has gone pretty well for your office
Everything has gone pretty well and a lot of work has been done Literally my electoral team has been working six and seven days a week for the last five, six months There is a lot at stake, and there is there are a lot of things that could happen if we went to postal voting on a permanent basis So there are different aspects to consider
We’re seeing a number of key battlefield states across the country still counting votes today, and it could go on for several more days. You were previously the head of the National Association of Secretary of State. Do you have confidence in your colleagues in other states that they will ensure that all votes are counted fairly and quickly enough?
Absolutely I think people have to remember that Congress has delegated the management of our electoral process to the states In every state 50 of us have different rules and laws that we have to follow This is processes completely different
And I know the states are working very diligently I’ve been in touch with a few of my colleagues in Michigan and Wisconsin, and I know they’re really working as hard as they can get to get an accurate count
And I would just say, Henry, that it is really important that Americans have the patience to allow election officials and other election officials time to ensure that the vote count is correct. This is what we are all looking for
Do you have questions, comments or advice? Send us a message or contact reporter Henry Epp @TheHenryEpp
This year election day gave way to election season Ballots were sent to all registered voters in Vermont the last week of September, and every Tuesday since then we have spoken to the Clerk of the Town of Williamstown
Election day was Tuesday, November 3, although much of the action took place before the same day According to the Vermont Secretary of State, as of November 2,260,142 people returned their ballots vote earlier, a record figure equivalent to 81% of the turnout in the 2016 general election
Find statewide results for the Presidential Election, Vermont Governor and Lieutenant Governor races, and contests for US Chamber, State Auditor, Attorney General and disputed districts of the Vermont House and Senate
Vermont, United States Presidential Election, 2020, Jim Condos, Secretary of State
News from the world – United States – Secretary of State says process of Vermont’s vote for 2020 went ‘pretty smoothly’
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