As the monster Hurricane Sandy brings high winds, rain and flooding to many parts of the Northeast USA, the possibility for the election to be delayed for those unable to vote in their precincts is likely. But what I see is a potential monster of an issue is how the delay could have both Democrats and Republicans crying “not fair” due to the so-called “safe harbor deadline” (six days before the Electoral College votes (deadline of December 17th).
I’m not a political expert, but this has some crazy potentials. In no particular order, but off of the top of my head are the following scenarios:
- States unaffected by natural disaster will have their votes deadline by November 6th, as expected. However, the results of these states could be showing a favored candidate without all of the states able to vote (those affected by natural disaster). The result? An extra MONTH of stumping by the candidates, using the numbers to their advantage (either way).
- The “safe harbor deadline” is decided by each state, so it’s possible that there could be any number of states choosing varying new deadlines (up to December 17th). The election deadline per state could be different enough that the candidates use the pre-counted numbers as the states turn in their votes to their advantage (either way).
- With relaxed identification standards, it’s possible that people could cast more than one ballot (a concern already for some) through the nearly impossible coordination of voting precincts not voting on the same day. It is not unlikely that the losing candidate (to date based on votes tabulated by November 6th) could have a portion of their base see their opportunity to vote and vote often by taking advantage of the system.
Those are just three of the things I think we could see play out over the next few days as clean up, power restoration and new precinct locations are selected.
This is all just speculation, but I thought it was interesting and decided to post this short blog post about it. What say you?