Living in Society

Fall Scene

View from our dining room.

Requests to vote by mail in the Nov. 8 election declined by 39 percent over 2018, the last midterm election. Republicans have successfully suppressed early voting by mail in Johnson County. Democrats are advising people to vote early in person if they have to, instead of risking the uncertainties of the United States Postal Service. An average 836 voters per day are voting early at the county administration building. With 14 days left, it seems unlikely early voting, especially in Big Grove precinct, will reach the level of 2018. It’s still early, yet if that holds true, it will be problematic for Democrats who are already in the minority in our House and Senate districts.

We cast our ballots at the administration building yesterday after returning from Des Moines. I’ll walk in the university homecoming parade on Friday with Mike Franken who is in the county most of the day. I’m door knocking with Kevin Kinney’s campaign this weekend. I sent in my last letters to newspaper editors for this cycle. I volunteered to be a Democratic poll watcher and the training is next week. In 2020 Republicans sent no poll watcher to our precinct even though most of their voters cast a ballot on election day. I don’t expect any trouble, yet there are stories of voter intimidation. These are the last days of the campaign and it feels a bit eerie, like we are not yet over the pandemic.