'Vote Center' Concept Could Change Election Day 2020

Voting may be entirely different in Texas started next year, as activists are urging the state to allow major counties to adopt what is called the 'Voting Centers' system in casting ballots on Election Day, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.

The Voting Center Placement Plan, which was proposed by the organization 'Voting Solutions for All People' following the 2016 election, which extend the concept that is common during early voting, accoring to Rice University political analyst Robert Stein. Allowing registered voters to cast ballots at any 'vote center' in the county, regardless of where they live.

"Since 1992 Texans have been able to vote in person before Election Day at any of a number of locations around their county," he said. "Usually they are not necessarily locations near where they live, but where they work or travel or shop during the day."

It would eliminate the regular tradition of having to dig through first the newspaper, and now the Internet, to determine what church you've never heard of on what street where you have never been, your voting precinct is located this Election Day. It would also eliminate the confusion which regularly happens when families move, and at the last minute they need to learn where the voting location is in their new precinct.

"They also reduce lines, and one of the things that has not gotten much publicity is, they cut costs."

That's because rather than hundreds of Election Day voting places in each precinct in the county, two dozen or so locations could be set up in malls, schools, libraries and other places, and voters could cast their Election Day ballot at any one of them, just like they currently do during early voting.

But there is opposition to the proposal as well. Advocates worry that it would depress the minority vote, because many low income people don't have the mobility that others may have, and many have gotten used to walking to the church up the street to vote. They're afraid that the loss of that Election Day convenience could result in depressed turnout.


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