A small thing we all can do to thwart Trump’s mail-in ballot assault

Commentary

Write your newspaper – Ask them to publish endorsements early

Yesterday in Around the Block, I posted an open letter to Amazon’s Jeff Bezos. https://around-the-block.com/2020/08/14/trumps-assault-on-the-postal-service-puts-the-election-in-peril/

In that column, after detailing Trump’s assault on the USPS with the singular purpose of depressing, or eliminating mail-in ballots, I asked Mr. Bezos this:

Use your ever-growing fleet of delivery trucks to deliver mail-in ballots to registered voters, pick up the completed ballots and then drop them off at the appropriate election authorities.

While I’m aware that this idea is a pipe dream, I also learned that others are asking similar questions. And I even read that UPS is addressing the issue by pointing out a major problem – “postmarks,” which only the post office can apply.

With only 80 days until the election, changing the postmark rule is probably out of reach. So I’ve come up with a backup plan.

Thwart Trump’s deviousness by helping to ensure voters get their ballots in early. How can that be facilitated? Since many voters wait to cast their votes until they see their newspaper’s endorsements, how about this: encourage newspapers to publish their endorsements as early as possible.

With that in mind, I’ve already sent letters to the editors of my two South Florida papers, the Palm Beach Post and the Sun-Sentinel. (What better place to help ensure votes count than South Florida).

Below is my letter in two versions as many papers have different word limits.

If you agree with this approach, I encourage you to write to your local newspaper as well. Perhaps a small thing, but a small thing that might make a difference.

150-Word Version

Donald Trump’s assault on the USPS is putting the 2020 election in peril.

Trump and his Postmaster General are trying to reduce the efficiency of the USPS, threatening to defund it while simultaneously sabotaging it from the inside. The goal: depress mail-in ballots; ballots that now, more than ever, are critical to a fair election.

I wrote to Amazon’s Jeff Bezos with this ask: “Use your fleet of delivery trucks to deliver and return mail-in ballots to the appropriate election authorities.”

It’s a pipe dream with many hurdles. But there’s an easier way the Sun-Sentinel can help overcome Trump’s assault on democracy.

Many people wait to vote until their newspaper publishes endorsements. My ask of you: publish those endorsements as early as possible, allowing voters to vote early and get their ballots in on time.

Voting is our sacred American right. You can help us realize that right.

200-Word Version

Donald Trump’s assault on the USPS is putting the 2020 election in peril.

Trump and his Postmaster General are doing whatever they can to reduce the efficiency of the USPS, including threats to defund it while simultaneously sabotaging it from the inside. The goal: depress the number of mail-in ballots in this election; ballots that now, more than ever in our history, are critical to a fair election; an election in which all of us have the right to make our voices heard.

I wrote to Amazon’s Jeff Bezos with this ask: “Use your fleet of delivery trucks to deliver mail-in ballots to registered voters, pick up the completed ballots and then drop them off at the appropriate election authorities.”

Yes, it’s a pipe dream with a multitude of hurdles. But there is an easier way the Palm Beach Post can help overcome Trump’s assault on democracy.

As you know, many people wait to vote until their newspaper publishes endorsements. My ask of you: publish those endorsements as early as possible, allowing voters to vote early and get their ballots in on time.

Voting is our sacred American right. You can help us realize that right.

Published by Ted Block

Ted Block is a veteran “Mad Man,” having spent 45+ years in the advertising industry. During his career, he was media director of several advertising agencies, including Benton & Bowles in New York and Foote, Cone and Belding in San Francisco; account management director on clients as varied as Clorox, Levi’s and the California Raisin Advisory Board (yes, Ted was responsible for the California Dancing Raisins campaign); and regional director for Asia based in Tokyo for Foote, Cone where he was also the founding president of FCB’s Japanese operations. Ted holds a Bachelor’s degree in communications from Queens College and, before starting in advertising, served on active duty as an officer on USS McCloy (DE-1038) in the U.S. Navy.

4 thoughts on “A small thing we all can do to thwart Trump’s mail-in ballot assault

  1. Great idea, I love it! You’ve said it so well, can I plagiarize any of your letter or use footnotes or quotes?

    >

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    1. No plagiarizing necessary. I sent the two versions specifically so folks who agree can use it as a template to send to their own newspapers or to colleagues of a like mind.

      Like

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