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From our earliest civics classes, we learn that when a bill becomes a law it must be enacted and enforced. This is a basic tenet of government, but it has been compromised by Governor Charlie Baker’s cut to the early voting budget. Early voting, prescribed by a new law going into effect for the November 2016 election, needs an infinitesimal fraction of the state budget to work; the $1.2 million which Gov. Baker cut from early voting represents .00003% of the total state budget. However, that amount would go a long way in ensuring the law’s ability to expand citizens’ participation in our democracy. For example, those dollars would allow communities to extend their voting hours, and establish additional locations for early voting. In a day and age when people hold down two or three jobs, commute to school and work, and juggle family and other obligations, we need to make voting more accessible. That is why the early voting law was passed, and why it should be implemented fully, not crippled by budget cuts. Governor Baker’s veto of its funding should be overridden.
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