Friday, September 19th, 2014

Vote Fast or Go Home

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voteVoting is inherently American. We’ve literally been doing it longer than we’ve been a country. Sure, not all of us have always been able to do it, but we slowly came around to dropping those barriers. But that doesn’t mean that you have all day to vote, especially not in Alabama. According to official voting documentation, voters are allowed to remain in the voting booth for four minutes, at which point they may be approached by a poll worker to see if assistance is needed. If you require assistance, you may have an additional five minutes to vote.

Yes, in Alabama, you have the right to vote, you just don’t have the right to take all day doing it. Or even longer than 10 minutes. Better figure out who you’re going to vote for before the curtain closes.

Alabama Code Section 17-9-13

(b) Any voter remaining in a voting station, including, but not limited to, a voting machine, table, booth, or device that permits a voter to complete a ballot in privacy, for four minutes or longer may be asked by a poll official if he or she requires assistance. At the same time, the voter shall be reminded that he or she has the right to have the assistance of any other person as permitted by law in this section, and that the poll officials may assist the voter if he or she so desires. If the voter does not desire assistance, the voter shall be permitted to remain in the voting station for no less than one additional minute. At the end of this additional minute, and if there exists a line of individuals waiting to vote, the voter may be informed that time is up and be asked to leave. If there is no line, the voter shall have as much time as necessary to finish voting. If the voter does request assistance, the voter may have the assistance of any person of his or her choosing currently in the voting place, as permitted by law in this section, and may have no less than an additional five minutes to vote. At the end of this additional five minutes, and if there exists a line of individuals waiting to vote, the voter may be informed that the time is up and be asked to leave the voting station. If there is no line, the voter shall have as much time as necessary to finish voting. Before an assigned voter exits the voting place, the voters’ poll list must be revised to reflect that assistance was received.

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