Voting is well underway for next month’s general election. Across the country, hundreds of thousands of people have already voted, and local officials say that includes thousands in Mid-Missouri.Still some, like Dr. Peverill Squire, a political science professor at the University of Missouri, say Missouri is falling behind other states.”It’s a little harder to vote absentee here than it is in other states,” Squire said. “There’s no other early voting, and so Missouri is again not one of the leaders in this regard.”With no early voting in the state, absentee ballots are the only option before election day. Still three weeks away, Cole County’s Clerk reports 1,555 absentee ballots have been sent out. Already more than half have been returned. And the same goes for Callaway County where 702 ballots were sent out, and 373 votes have been cast.Cole County Clerk, Marvin Register, says those numbers would be even greater if the state made some changes.”In my opinion we need no excuse absentees,” Register said. “They can come in and vote anytime they want to in that six weeks and not have to tell you why they’re coming early.”Register says candidates are targeting those estimate 46 million early voters. Both he and Squire say in order to keep Missourians politically engaged, we need to stop giving excuses.”Oh, I think it’d bring out more people to vote absentee instead of going to the polls,” Register said.Squire added, “The easier you make it to vote, the more people will likely cast a ballot.”
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