To the members of the MIT community,
In a pandemic, many simple, normal things become complicated – and one of them, unfortunately, is the act of voting.
As an immigrant and a naturalized US citizen, I feel a particular pride and gratitude in being able to exercise this sacred right. But I hope everyone in our community who is eligible to vote will find a safe way to do so – whether in person or by mail – without letting the pandemic get in the way.
Whether you are a student, a staff member, a postdoc or faculty, I encourage you to visit MIT Turbovote to:
- Check if you are already registered
- Register to vote
- Request an absentee ballot, if you choose
- And check the dates and deadlines for all the elections in your state or territory.
And of course, I encourage you to vote!
If you’re a student, you may want to join with your peers across the country in making a pledge to vote, through ALL IN to Vote, part of the ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge.
There are also many ways to support voting and help ensure a safe and healthy election. For instance:
- You could join MITvote, a nonpartisan student group supported by the PKG Public Service Center, with a mission to get everyone in our community to vote – and whose efforts have dramatically increased our students’ voting rates.
- We can all urge the people around us, including on social media, to get registered now. We can share reminders of key upcoming voting dates – and we can encourage everyone we know to vote.
- To make sure the polls run smoothly on Election Day, if you feel safe doing so, you can sign up here to be trained as a poll worker.
- And you can explore the pioneering work of Professor Charles Stewart and other scholars in the MIT Election Data and Science Lab, who have made MIT a leader in election science and the support of healthy elections.
Because a significant portion of the votes cast this November will be by mail, it may take much longer than usual for results of elections to be clear. The important thing is that, ultimately, every voter's voice is heard. One way we can all help is by registering in advance, planning for a safe way to vote – and voting.
Tomorrow is National Voter Registration Day. Let’s make it count!
L. Rafael Reif