The 2020 Presidential Election results will not be announced the evening of Tuesday, November 3. The Electoral College is a complicated, but time-honored path. Trust the process.
Read the LWVGR article in the Rockford Register Star Newspaper, published Saturday, October 31, 2020.
Listen to the LWVGR Perspectives edition, “Strengthening Our Democracy,” on WNIJ, Northern Public Radio Wed., Nov. 4, 2020.
Every election, especially a presidential election, is considered a high holy day to the League of Women Voters. It is our all-consuming, nonpartisan effort to register voters, present candidate platforms, conduct forums, and inform voters on the various methods in which they may vote. It is exhausting and exhilarating.
A bitterly partisan atmosphere, an ultra-conservative majority in three government branches, rumors of foreign election interference, extreme candidate character assassination, states that ignore district election tallies to choose electors by party-controlled legislatures, leaks to the press, voter suppression of women and people of color, armed citizens prepared to use force to start civil war, a 10-week wait caused by the popular vote recipient tied in the Electoral, makes for a daunting election year. Imagine a president chosen in the 36th ballot achieved by a negotiated outcome. 2020 is a year of unprecedented election upheaval.
Wait, that’s not this election, that’s the election of 1800. Thomas Jefferson presided over the first peaceful transition of power in the United States after a long, ugly electoral process that nearly ended our democracy. Like the current election, the parties agreed on one thing: “The victor of this election would set America’s course for generations to come, perhaps forever.“
It is important to remember that our democracy did not end. It persevered and evolved as all living things do. The League of Women Voters of Greater Rockford has dedicated much time and resources to provide up-to-date information useful to voters on our website at http://lwvgr.org.
Currently, the focus has been on helping citizens acquire the information to make decisions on candidates and referenda for the election season culminating on Tuesday. No longer “Election Day,” we now have an “Election Season.” In Illinois, it started Sept. 24 and ends at the mail-in ballot deadline of Nov. 18. (Mail-in ballots must be postmarked by Nov. 3.) Note: As of today, DO NOT MAIL IN YOUR BALLOT. DROP IT OFF AT YOUR VOTING AUTHORITY: County clerk’s offices or, for Rockford residents, the Board of Elections office at 301 S. 6th St. Additional voting authority addresses are available at http://lwvgr.org. Information has been added to our website to help report and mitigate voter suppression and intimidation. See it, report it.
To our knowledge, voter suppression is not an issue in Winnebago and Boone counties. The impetus for the creation of the Rockford Board of Elections was a massive voter fraud scandal in 1910. So far, the system works.
At the end of the “Election Season,” the “Electoral College Season” begins. At the stroke of 7 p.m. on Tuesday, the http://lwvgr.org website ceases to be an election authority site and becomes…an Electoral College Authority site. SPOILER ALERT: The complete count of the presidential election will not be announced the night of Tuesday, Nov. 3. The electors vote in their states on Dec. 14 and the 117th Congress doesn’t count the electoral vote until Jan. 6. For every election, the full count is never complete on “Election Day.” Only a statistical presumption is made. The Associated Press has already announced they will not predict a presidential winner Nov. 3.
Thank you to the many voters inspired to engage in this precedent-setting election. Regardless of party or views we can agree that voting is a fundamental pillar of our democracy.
Go to The League of Women Voters of Greater Rockford website at http://lwvgr.org for voter information until Tuesday, then return for Electoral College updates. Don’t worry, have patience. Democracy is at work.