Could you tell me about a presidential election?

Q: Could you tell me about a presidential election?

A: In the US, we have a presidential election this year. The way people vote varies greatly from state to state, but most states are offering a vote by mail option this year, due to Covid-19 concerns.

In my state, we always vote by mail. This is not a new system for us. Some states are struggling to quickly find the budget for mailing out ballots, but in Washington state, it’s business as usual. The only difference for voting this year for us is that the ballots were sent out a little earlier than usual. We received ours two weeks ago.


Ballots must be filled out with a blue or black pen.

After voting, the ballot should be folded and placed in a special security envelope. Then the security envelope is placed inside a mailing envelope. In my state, we can either return our ballots (postage free) through the mail, OR we can locate a county drop box and drop our ballots inside. We chose to use a drop box, as the post office is dealing with an unprecedented amount of mail due to the pandemic.


In about one week, we can check online and see if our ballot has been received, and if there are any issues with it (such as signatures not matching, etc). If there are no problems, the ballot will be marked “received”. If there is an issue, it will be noted on the county website, and you will have a chance to correct the issue.

It’s quite easy and very secure to vote this way! It also allows more people to vote. When we must go to a poling place to cast our ballot, many people are excluded. Some people must work each day, some people may have mobility issues, some people may not be able to afford a taxi or bus to the poling place. Voting by mail makes the voting process more equitable for all.


Q: 大統領選挙について教えて。

A: 米国では、今年大統領選挙があります。投票の仕方は州によって本当に様々なんだけど、今年は新型コロナウィルスの懸念があるから、ほとんどの州で郵送での投票が選べるようになっているのね。