Mail-In Ballot Rejection, Caucuses and an Incompetent Political Party

One point I’ve made about mail-in balloting is that there’s a lot of fiddly things that can be done incorrectly. Well-intentioned people would look past these things, but since Republicans are involved, voters mailing in ballots better dot all their i’s and cross their t’s.

And then there’s North Carolina, in which ballots submitted by black voters are being rejected at four times the rate of ballots submitted by whites; for Hispanic voters, their rejection rate is three times as high as white voters. One complication appears to be people submitting ballots without a witness signature.

If Democrats were a competent political party (a boy can dream!), they would be spending a little less money on ads and more money on instructions and ensuring people have witnesses–I imagine the elderly could find it difficult to get a witness.

I realize caucuses are bad in most ways–and Iowa’s 2020 caucuses were a nightmare–but they do require a campaign to ensure everything goes right, from start to finish. You need to turn people out, make sure they stay, and hold their votes. As I noted about the Iowa caucuses:

But the app collapse is important because it highlights three problems with the Democratic Party–and by party, I don’t just mean the elected officials, but the consultants and unelected officers of the party, along with aligned pundits, which I often refer to as professional Democrats. While this seems like insider stuff, as Monday demonstrated, these failures hurt the party’s ability to take power. We need better professional Democrats, as the rest of us can’t be there all the time to do all the things.

Right now, a little more organization might make the difference between winning and losing North Carolina’s electoral votes and a Senate seat, and it’s not clear said organizational ability is in evidence.

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12 Responses to Mail-In Ballot Rejection, Caucuses and an Incompetent Political Party

  1. Dick B says:

    Hi Mike TMB,
    I’m long-time reader, first-time commenter. I’ve voluteered to be a poll watcher when in-person voting starts here in NC, and in the training have learned about the response to this problem. First, the NC Dems are doing education on mail-in voting, though I don’t know the scope. The bigger response, as far as I can tell (especially the number of emails asking me to man phone banks on it) is to use NC’s procedure to cure deficient ballots. County Boards of Elections must contact every mail-in voter whose ballot has been rejected and give them a chance to cure the problem. Dems have recruited watchers for the mail-in vote openings/countings. They’ve also put together a phone bank to then call every person whose ballot was rejected, regardless of party, and walk them through the cure procedure. This will allow perfectly targeted responses, without much wasted time and effort. We’ll see how well it works, but I expect that in most counties, a high percentage of rejected mail-in ballots will be counted. Dems are not always clueless!

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