What’s cooking in California politics?
California voters are trying out a new recipe for absentee ballots this election season.
1) Spray your ballot down with an alcohol-based sanitizing spray.
2) Let your ballot air dry for 5 minutes.
3) Microwave your ballot on high for 30 seconds.
4) Allow your ballot to cool before enjoying.
Following these four simple steps is a sure way to eliminate any potential coronavirus germs that may have contaminated your ballot in the mail. Don’t believe me? Just ask the more than 100 California voters who returned damaged ballots to election officials this month.
That’s right! According to Courtney Bailey-Kanelos, registrar of voters in Sacramento County, the damaged ballots her office received show signs of an attempt to disinfect ballots with what her staff believes to be alcohol-based disinfectants. At least one ballot showed clear signs that it had been microwaved.
“Voters do not have to worry about contracting COVID from their mail-in ballots,” said Bailey-Kanelos.
As insane as it sounds, voters may have a legitimate concern though. Several studies have shown that the coronavirus can remain on surfaces for up to 28 days. Many Americans began wiping down their groceries after shopping back in March during the onset of the pandemic in an attempt to stop the spread.
There is a fine line, however, between cleaning your groceries with a wet wipe and nuking your official election ballot in the microwave.
In fact, election officials want to make it clear to voters that spraying liquid onto or microwaving a ballot could make it unreadable by vote tabulation machines. So, in an election where every vote counts, Californians may want to refrain from treating their ballots like ramen noodles.
Sure, safety first but take it from the professionals. Your ballot isn’t going to kill you.
“We understand that the outgoing white envelope that you get that maybe the mail service carrier may have touched, you want to kind of hold that aside for 24 hours,” Bailey-Kanelos said. “Everything inside the pink return envelope, the ballots themselves, they have been inserted by a machine weeks ago, so they are safe.”
So, the next time you hear about fires in California…think twice before you blame it on climate change. After all, it may have just started with your neighbor attempting to exercise their right to vote…
Stay classy, California!
PHOTO: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
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