Letter: In Eagle County, democracy in action | VailDaily.com

Letter: In Eagle County, democracy in action

2020 has been one of the most polarizing years in modern history. It feels all but impossible to spend hours with someone on the opposite end of the political spectrum, but my experience volunteering as an election judge in Eagle County has given me a renewed sense of hope and unique perspective on our electoral process. 

First and foremost, the process works. 

Paid volunteers work in teams of two — one representative from each party — to collect your ballot, verify your signature, open and confidentially count your vote by hand before the ballot is read by the scanner. At every step of this process, a ballot is never in the possession of a single person or out of sight of the bipartisan team. 

Eagle County election officials in the Clerk and Recorders office — the unsung heroes of our local democratic process — work tirelessly to maintain the security and sanctity of every vote. If you spill coffee on your ballot, drop it in the mail without a stamp, send your ballot in the wrong envelope, or you cross out your first response to make a change, an independent council of judges follows a meticulous validation process to make sure your vote is counted. 

Secondly, sitting across from my teammate from “the other side of the aisle,” I’ve learned we share a deep commitment to our democratic process that transcends party identity. The desire to trust our democracy is not a partisan issue and we should all be committed to building trust in our institutions. 

This week, I have seen American democracy in action. While I cannot speak for any other counties, Eagle County voters should feel a high degree of trust that the process is secure, confidential, and nonpartisan.

Visit a polling location or drop off your ballot by Tuesday at 7 p.m. with the confidence that your vote counts and it matters.

Jan Abbott


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