Thursday, October 27, 2016

My virtual ‘I Voted’ sticker

This morning I received an email that brings my voting year to a close. I see that email as a sort of virtual “I Voted” sticker that in-person voters get. I like that, but I much prefer knowing that my vote was counted.

The email I got said:
Dear Arthur Schenck,

Your ballot for the following election

General Election

has been COUNTED.

For more information, contact your local election official

Thank you,
Illinois State Board of Elections
This basically the same email I received after I voted in the Illinois Democratic Primary last March. As I said at the time, I got the email because I’d participated in the MOVE/FPCA programme in Illinois. Up until this year, I never received such a notice, and I was always left wondering whether they’d received my ballot or not. This year, I knew for sure that they did.

As I also said last March, they were able to track my ballot based on the sticker on the outer envelope; my ballot itself had absolutely nothing on it that could link it to me personally (and, in fact, it would be a crime for it to have such personally-identifiable information). When I share the email text on Facebook, I said it was a little creepy—but everything we do is tracked by someone, somewhere, and at least in this case I know for sure my votes were counted.

My experience of Illinois’ implementation of the MOVE/FPCA programme (which I talked about in more detail in January) was entirely positive: It was easy to navigate, everything arrived in a timely manner, AND I know for sure they received my ballot. I’m a happy voter.

That concludes all my voting for this year, both in the USA and here in New Zealand. It’s been a good year to be a citizen of two countries!

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