Speak Out: Extending protections in state of emergency

Democratic lawmakers filed several bills last week that would extend provisions of the state of emergency imposed by the governor in March. The bills deal with voting by mail, telemedicine and outdoor restaurant seating capacity. House Bill 346 would allow all eligible voters to cast ballots by mail for any election this year, expanding the absentee voting system in place for decades here. The measure would direct the Department of Elections to mail an application for a vote-by-mail ballot to every voter who can participate. Voters would fill out and mail back the form to receive a ballot.

• We don’t need vote-by-mail. If you can go into a Lowe’s, Walmart or any other store, you can go to a polling place and show your ID. – Mark Schmalhofer

• troubles you about voting by mail? A lot of high-risk people don’t go shopping — they have others shopping for them. – Deby Daly

• I think a majority of people can vote in person. Those who truly are compromised can vote by absentee or mail-in ballot. – Julianne Shockley

• Yes, you can go into a Lowe’s or a Walmart, but what about our elderly population and those immunocompromised? There’s really nothing wrong with expanding mail-in and still have people be able to vote in person. Voting isn’t supposed to be difficult. –  Chris Henry

• Then, they can vote absent. The majority of us can still vote in person. –  Mary Grampp Brown

• I really don’t understand why people are so opposed to mail-in voting. Look what just happened in Georgia – what a disaster. –  Shannon Marie

• My dad has been dead for two years now, with no affiliation to where I live, and I got a mail-in voting ballot for him in the mail. That is why we do not need mail-in voting. –  Tanya Hall Jester

• The system needs to be fixed. To be clear, that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t do mail-in voting. — Benjamin Black

• Mail-in is OK if you can’t drive or are overseas for military or stationed somewhere else, or live in two different states. Otherwise, one can cheat, vote more than once, and dead people vote. People need to understand why it’s a problem. – Debra Meinhardt Petro

• People suddenly hate mail-in voting because Trump said it was bad, despite being a common voting method of older people. – Pete Schonert

• Ask all of these GOP people to list the times when voter ballots got lost or other supposed fraud, and you will find it’s done by Republicans because they are afraid they are losing! Georgia is primed to see voter suppression by the GOP! – Douglas Mastin

• The point is, unless you are a protester, they are trying to keep our freedoms locked down. We have a right to do what we want. Those who want to keep hiding in their homes can. The numbers in this state say it is time to open all the way back up. – Lisa Garber

• The GOP is scared to death to have vote by mail because it would be a blue landslide. Quit crying, we live in the land of the free. Vote by mail is the easy answer. – Ian VanSant

• Give us dates or links so we can check the accuracy for ourselves. If you want your words to carry weight, especially inflammatory ideas, then be prepared to back them up with sources. – Kristin Froehlich

• No to mailing in a vote! – Cindy Christiansen

• If I want to vote by mail, it’s my right to vote by mail. – Gary Greer