Republican Assemblyman Crescent Hardy (R-Boulder City) has proposed a bill (AB 311) that will tick off half of Nevada’s voters even though it is absolutely, positively the right thing to do: End early voting as we know it. Sure, plenty of Nevada voters love it….but then again, just because kids love ice cream doesn’t mean you serve it to them for breakfast.
The fact is, early voting makes campaigns far more expensive, which means it benefits incumbents over their underfunded challengers. And the two-week window for early voting means too many voters are going to the polls without hearing from the challengers who often can’t afford to do mail, radio and/or TV to communicate with voters until the last week before an election.
But Nevadans are now addicted to the political crack-cocaine of early voting, so allow me to propose a compromise: Allow early voting just on the Saturday and Monday before Election Day. That should give everyone an opportunity to vote who otherwise might be inconvenienced by a Tuesday vote. It would also satisfy concerns about polls being too crowded if we go back to Election Day-only voting. And for those for whom Saturday/Monday/Tuesday voting is, for whatever reason, not possible, there is still the option of voting by Absentee Ballot.
Kudos to Assemblyman Hardy for having the stones to propose a little methadone for early-voting crackheads.