The spread of COVID-19 has unfortunately forced almost everyone to change their ways of life. This is evident through newly implemented social distancing mandates, remote working and schooling, bans on large gatherings and countless other adjustments. Thus with the upcoming elections in November, it comes as no surprise that there are going to be modifications made to the voting process.
Due to the coronavirus, the importance of voting by mail has risen to national prominence as the majority of Americans do not feel safe congregating in block-filling lines with hundreds of other people to submit their vote. Voting through mail allows citizens to practice their basic constitutional right while also maintaining personal safety and upholding their end of healthy social and civic responsibility. At a time in American politics when people are as polarised and topics are as partisan as ever, the need to vote is particularly of utmost importance. However, President Donald Trump has recently announced his indignant opposition towards an increase in funding to the United States Postal Service (USPS) claiming that his efforts are in favor of preventing “voter fraud.” There exists no evidence linking voting by mail to an increase in voter fraud; instead of supporting his claims, these baseless assertions made by Trump have instead outlined his own attempts at rigging the upcoming election.
“Trump’s attempts to manipulate [the voting process] this November is ridiculous. It’s completely wrong to censor Americans and [infringe on] their rights. This method of restriction is… all due to Trump’s ego because he knows the likelihood of his reelection is slim. He claims to be afraid of ‘voter fraud’ when he knows full well voter fraud isn’t what’s hurting his chances. Thus, him going through with [what is essentially] sabotage just to stay in office goes to show that Trump is [immoral], unintelligent and needs to be replaced this November,” said junior Keira Miracle-Tilford.
Voting by mail is by no means a novel idea; it has been available and utilized by countless Americans for years. Trump’s suggestion that the system is a faulty designed entity susceptible to voter fraud is inaccurate. The cuts to funding he insists on are not helping anyone. Instead, they are negatively impacting all the concerned citizens who want to exercise their basic rights. In a public health crisis like this, a model citizen would be someone who tries to help their community and government while still abiding by necessary health precautions. Voter apathy is a massive issue in this country and this pandemic is certainly not helping that matter. By pushing for budget cuts, Trump is exacerbating voter apathy and essentially punishing citizens who are trying to slow the spread of Covid-19.
“Trump argues that citizens should simply vote in person, however not everyone feels comfortable in doing that and rightfully so. Cutting funds for the post office during the times when citizens need it most is a violation of power. However, his continued violations of power somehow seem to make him more powerful,” said senior Gineija Townsend.
It is absolutely crucial to provide ample accessibility for voters in November or else the already staggering number of eligible voters who do not exercise their right will further rise. If voting is not easily accessible, citizens will continue to see it as an unbearable task instead of a productive necessity. What Trump is doing is wrong on many levels, the most prominent being a legal one. This move is both immoral and unconstitutional and Trump’s history has proven he has no problem entering into both of those territories. Though this decision is most notable in the impact it lends on voting, it also just hurts the American mail system as a whole. People rely on the USPS to send and receive mail and Trump’s attempt to defund it only hurts them. Voter fraud isn’t as colossal of an issue as Trump makes it out to be but a crippled mailing system would prove to be one.
“The USPS has been a very important part of America for a long time and it plays a critical role in every city and community. People rely on it to communicate with friends and family, send and receive packages and many other [services]. Trump is willing to [go against] all the people who depend on it, just in case it might help [his reelection]. I think that says a lot about him and his presidency as a whole,” said freshman Kirk Enos III.