The Massachusetts Fiscal Alliance (MassFiscal) made the following statement today in response to Boston City Councilors Ed Flynn and Michael Flaherty alleging that some vote by mail ballots were improperly discarded by the United States Postal Service (USPS).
The Councilor’s allegation comes on the day before Election Day in Boston. According to news report, Councilor Flaherty was quoted as alleging that a substitute USPS letter carrier was “caught” tossing ballots. This is not the first time the USPS has come under fire for its handling of ballots. In April, WGBH investigative reporter Paul Singer reported on the USPS delayed delivery of mail in a story titled “We Mailed 100 Letters to Test The Postal Service. We Did Not Get Speedy Delivery.” MassFiscal has cautioned State House leaders and vote by mail advocates of the pitfalls associated with wide scale vote by mail.
“Let today be a lesson of the inherent problems associated with wide scale vote by mail. Anytime a voter gives up their ballot to someone that it not an election official, there is a greater chance that ballot will not count compared to voting in person and on Election Day. If you hold your vote as sacred, you should do everything in your power to make sure you hand deliver your completed ballot to the appropriate voting machine or election official,” stated Paul Diego Craney, spokesperson for Massachusetts Fiscal Alliance.
According to Massachusetts election law, even before the COVID-19 pandemic related large scale vote by mail program was instituted, the state already had a no fault mail-in process for any voter who could not physically vote on Election Day.
“It is completely misguided to think large scale vote by mail will go off flawlessly, with all the ballots counted. Any polling location counts 100% of the ballots of which they’re aware, however, the USPS cannot guarantee 100% of the ballots sent in the mail will reach election officials. The more links in the chain of custody of a ballot, the less secure it will be. State House leaders need to emphasis in person and on Election Day voting in Massachusetts. That is the only way to guarantee greater election integrity,” concluded Craney.