BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Thousands of Alabamians took advantage of absentee voting in the 2020 Presidential Election leading many to wonder why the state doesn’t offer early voting.
That’s a decision for Alabama lawmakers, and one state representative is already working on it.
Early voting in Alabama is an issue Rep. John Rogers is pushing for right now.
“I’m pre-filing a bill I’m trying to work both sides of the aisle. I’m trying to work with Republicans and Democrats so we can get a chance to vote early,” Rogers said.
“So far, I’ve got all the Democrats. I just got to get a few Republicans to concur,” he explained.
Thousands of voters waited hours in long lines to cast their ballots on Election Day.
And while many took advantage of absentee voting, Rogers said the state needs more ways to accommodate voters.
“It’s a constitutional right to have the right to vote and we should make it easier. By early voting you make it easier for folks to get to the polls and vote,” Rogers said.
His republican colleague, Rep. Danny Garrett agrees.
“I think you could have a process that works that allows people an opportunity to vote and we certainly want people to vote. We want them to exercise that right, and I think we should accommodate them just like we do accommodate people in other areas of life,” Garrett said.
He added that we may not have to wait as long for results with early voting.
“Texas for example, was called fairly early last night and Texas had a large, I want to say it was maybe 70% was early vote. So, they already had that tabulated, so they just added the election day votes and were able to call that pretty quickly,” Garrett explained.
Both representatives said early voting may also encourage more people to get out and vote.
Rep. Garrett said about 62% of Alabama voters turned out for the November 3 election compared to the 15% to 20% at most other elections.