Hamilton Herald Masthead


Front Page - Friday, August 28, 2020

Have a voting plan for 2020

The last two weeks have been exciting times for our democracy. With the Democratic and Republican national conventions coming to an end, it’s clear both sides are highly invested in November’s general election.

While there’s little both parties agree on, there is one thing that binds them – the importance of voting. As a citizen, casting your ballot is both a right and a responsibility, and the results of voting can echo far into the future.

When you vote, you’re not just making a choice for the next four years. Legislation affects further generations, so you’re voting for your children, nieces and nephews. Voting is very, very important.

Earlier this month, we celebrated the 100th anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment, which granted women the right to vote. What some might not know is Tennessee played a vital role in its 1920 passage by being the 36th and final state needed to ratify this landmark amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Tennessee helped bring about a momentous, inclusive change to our voting system.

Participating in this sacred civic duty safely is something people might have been taken for granted in the past. However, COVID-19 has spurred an awareness of how social behavior can be a risk. While COVID-19 remains a big concern, I hope you vote and make a plan to do so safely.

Thankfully, there are options for those who wish to remain socially distant and still practice their sacred right of voting.

One possibility is early voting. Instead of many people showing up on Election Day to cast their ballots, early voting increases the window of time during which people can cast votes, which helps to spread the number of people voting over many dates and allows individuals to distance themselves.

Early voting is scheduled for Oct. 14-29 in Tennessee, Oct. 12-30 in Georgia. Dates and hours might vary based on where you live, so check with your county’s election commission.

Another option is voting by mail. With COVID-19 appearing this year, this opportunity has become increasingly popular in a number of states. In Tennessee, an absentee ballot application can be requested as many as 90 days before the election but no later than seven days before the election. Georgia voters can request an absentee ballot application as many as 180 days before the election but no later than four days before the election.

There might be other stipulations to voting by mail in your specific area, so it’s important for anyone interested in utilizing this method to check with their local county’s election commission to be aware of any needed documentation and pertinent dates.

Realtors don’t just sell houses, we also serve the real estate needs of our community. Housing helps make our neighborhood, state and country stronger. That’s Who We R.

Greater Chattanooga Realtors is The Voice of Real Estate in Greater Chattanooga. A regional organization with more than 2,000 members, Greater Chattanooga Realtors is one of 300 local boards and associations of Realtors nationwide that comprise the National Association of Realtors. Greater Chattanooga Realtors service Hamilton and Sequatchie counties in southeast Tennessee and Catoosa, Dade and Walker counties in northwest Georgia. For more information, visit www.gcar.net or call 423 698-8001.