Lake County supports military voting equity
Lake County leaders recently urged Illinois legislators to create an amendment for active-duty voters, allowing them the same voting time frame as civilians on election dates.
Currently in Illinois, U.S. military members who are offshore at election time are obligated to have their mail-in ballots postmarked a full 24 hours before the general population, creating a discrepancy with other aspects of the election code recognizing midnight on Election Day as the standard deadline.
“The men and women who wear our country’s uniform deserve the same opportunities to vote that everyday citizens receive,” Aaron Lawlor, Lake County board chairman, said. “While I don’t think the General Assembly intended to create this inequity for our military men and women, it is important that they amend our election laws so vote-by-mail deadlines are the same for everyone.”
In the name of fairness to those serving our nation, Lake County also advocates for the amendment to eliminate the administrative irregularity. The request has been included in Lake County’s 2016 overall Legislative Program. Lake County Clerk Carla Wyckoff noted that the election code is very complex and clarity is paramount.
“It is our goal to make sure voters understand their voting rights and take advantage of every opportunity to vote,” Wyckoff said. “When there are inconsistencies, it makes it much more challenging. I am grateful for the outstanding team at the Lake County Clerk’s Office who found the inconsistency.”