Would you like to have a sample ballot before you vote? Are you still uncertain about some candidates or what referendums might be on your ballot?
Janice Bially Mattern, Social Sciences and Data Services librarian, provided this fascinating, informative (and addictive) website < https://www.ballotready.org/> for BallotReady.
“Every candidate and referendum, explained.” “Know what you are voting for by researching every name and issue on the ballot with BallotReady.” (website) “We founded BallotReady because we believe that no one should have to guess or leave blanks on their ballot. … [BallotReady] was founded as the movement to create a more informed democracy.” (email)
To get started with BallotReady, type in your home (voting) address and click “Get Started.” A list of offices which will be on your ballot appears, beginning with President of the United States and moving down in order of rank, ending with whatever referendums are on your local ballot. Click on the office you are interested in; for example, I selected President of the United States and four candidates – Democratic, Republican, Libertarian and Green – appeared, each in a box with a small photograph and a brief biography. At the top of the page are places you click to bring up a candidate’s stance (numerous topics here-education, economy, etc.), endorsements (publications, organizations), and news (articles with sources and publication dates). After reading available information, select “Add to my ballot” for the candidate you choose. After creating an account you can either print or email your list of chosen candidates and how you want to vote on any referendums. I found the explanation of the referendum (retirement age for judges) on my ballot very helpful because the language used is misleading.
Unfortunately, BallotReady does not work for all states. It is currently available for Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Illinois, Massachusetts, Nevada, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Virginia.
For information about Social Sciences or Data Services, contact Janice Bially Mattern, room 229, 610-519-5391.