Mail voting’s built-in risk

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Register Guard:  Astute — or obsessive — readers will notice a difference between the summary of election recommendations printed above and the version of the list printed a week ago: This time, there’s no endorsement in the Republican presidential race. There’s no need for one, because there’s no race. Donald Trump’s last remaining opponents dropped out after the May 3 Indiana primary, leaving him unopposed for the Republican nomination….

Oregon’s Republican ballot illustrates an inherent risk in the state’s vote-by-mail system. Ballots are mailed nearly three weeks before the actual election date. This year, ballots for the May 17 primary began arriving in the final days of April. Three weeks can be an eternity in politics. Circumstances can change during that period. In Lane County, 8,275 ballots had already been returned by the time Cruz and Kasich ended their campaigns, and a number of those ballots were undoubtedly cast by Republicans.

The change in the GOP’s presidential field in the midst of Oregon’s voting process will have no serious consequences for the party or for any candidate.   But it’s possible to imagine an event that would shake up a race — a scandal, perhaps, or a health crisis. Early voters would find that they had cast their ballots without a piece of vital information, potentially leading to a different result than if all votes were cast on Election Day.   Read more.  (Photo)