Vote to save Earth. It’s the only planet that has chocolate.
Credit: NASA

Tuesday is election day. If you haven’t taken advantage of the opportunity to mail your vote for free, you may have blown the opportunity. Not all mail that gets picked up tomorrow or delivered tomorrow gets postmarked for tomorrow. A Wednesday postmark will leave your ballot envelope sealed and uncounted.

The next-best option is to find one of the many drop boxes near you, and drop it off there by 8 pm Tuesday. Don’t worry if it is the wrong county. The ballots will make their way to the correct counting center.

Drop boxes near light rail stations include:

King County Administration Building, with ballot drop box on the street and accessible voting machines on the 4th floor
  • Seattle Central College (a couple blocks south of Capitol Hill Station)
  • King County Administration Building, 500 4th Ave (a block east of Pioneer Square Station)
  • Uwajimaya (a couple blocks south and block east of International District / Chinatown Station)
  • Beacon Hill Library (a block south of Beacon Hill Station)
  • Rainier Community Center (a few blocks east of Columbia City Station)
  • Rainier Beach Community Center (several blocks east of Rainier Beach Station)

There is also a drop box at the west end of the UW campus, at the southeast corner of University Way NE and NE 41st St, among many others throughout the county and state.

Go to the ballot drop box page to see the exact location of the drop box.

You also have the option of standing in line at an accessible voting site, and casting an electronic vote. Get in line by 8 pm Tuesday. Three accessible voting sites are available in King County today and tomorrow:

  • King County Administration Building, room 440
  • Bellevue Regional Library
  • King County Elections headquarters in Renton

Union Station is no longer an accessible voting site, so go to the County Administration Building, 500 4th Ave, 4th floor.

You’ve heard about all that money that will be given to that “unelected and unaccountable board” from the carbon pollution fee (Initiative 1631), to (ahem) make recommendations to the Legislature about how to spend it, since the $31 million spent by Big Oil to educate you has surely given you several mailers. Consider this our last, best chance to get the state into the business of funding transit and transit construction. And what better way to do it than to charge polluters? (Yeah, I know, someone will argue that it can’t pay for it all, and it is not a dependable funding source, so the polluters should get off free, and it’ll trickle down, and won’t prevent any pollution at all, or won’t prevent enough so why not just give up trying, or we should just wait for the Legislature to act, or someone has a slightly better approach and the money to collect the signatures to put it on the ballot, and, really there is no rush and we must get it perfect and get consensus from the oil companies, etc.)

Our full list of endorsements can be accessed from the top bar. Let’s tell Big Oil we want a future for life on Earth.

32 Replies to “Drop Off Ballot By Tomorrow, or Stand in Line for Accessible Voting, by 8 pm”

  1. “Not all mail that gets picked up tomorrow or delivered tomorrow gets postmarked for tomorrow.”

    Well, I really hope that’s not true but I’ve never heard anything like that in my life.

    1. It would be a serious error in the system if so. I never expected this, and I’m sure 99% of the voters don’t either. I hope he means just that if you put it in a mailbox after the stated pickup time nobody will see it until tomorrow. You should be able to hand something in at the post office or put it in the post office boxes before the pickup time and expect a portmark that day. That’s what postmarks are for, and businesses and courts depend on them to prove that something was mailed on a certain day.

      1. Not everything handed in at the post office counter will be postmarked that day, especially after 8 pm on election day, ever since Mike McGinn’s campaign urged his supporters who missed the deadline to head to a post office that was open until midnight. The postmark may reflect when the letter gets through the high-volume processing machine than when someone at the counter accepts it.

      2. Brent is exactly correct. If the belt still has mail on it at midnight, those letters get postmarked the next day.

        Obviously, the Postal Service does its double-darn-betcha best effort to make sure that doesn’t happen on election day in Washington State. But don’t count on it; put it in a drop box if you wait until the last pickups tomorrow.

    2. This happened to my wife and I in Queen Anne a few years ago. We gave the ballots to the post man the day before election day and the King County tracker said they never got them. Post man literally just threw them out.

      So please please just drop your ballot off at a drop box if it’s this close. Assuming your postal worker is more honest than ours, it still may be they just submit it later because they are lazy, etc. Better to be safe than sorry this close to election day.

      1. I don’t know the part about “threw them out”, but I’ve been involved in two campaigns where mail fraud was involved. One involved the postbox for the campaign being closed without the owner’s permission with a note over the box saying the recipient didn’t exist. The owner wasn’t notified to verify the closure. The post office simply returned all mail to that box.

        The other involved a private mail center shutting down days before an election, and returning mail, with no notice to the owners of closed private mailboxes.

        And then there was a bulk mailing for a city election where the mail sat at the distribution center too long and arrived the day after the election. I wasn’t involved in that, but only read about it.

        I’m not convinced that any mailman throws away mail maliciously, but some are capable of inside sabotage on campaigns, and I’ve seen plenty of it.

      2. Did those two cases happen in King County or Washington State? I’ve never hard of such mail problems with elections here.

      3. Well let’s just say it never counted. So I guess the idea is maybe he just forgot to deliver it and then sent it in late so it didn’t count? The sad thing was he gave us his word he would get them there on time and then didn’t. It really made me regret every trusting the post office on this and so now I mail super early and track it the whole way. If it’s close to election day then I just go and drop it off in person.

  2. I’ve actually received surprisingly little political mailers this year. I’m guessing it has to do with the presumption that my zip code is going to vote a certain way anyways so they’re slamming some other zip code instead.

    1. I got four of the “No on grocery taxes (really soda tax)” postcards. Do you want one?

      Actually, I threw them away so it’s too late. But I may get another one this afternoon. :)

    2. I got like 6 identical giant postcards from the same candidate, all addressed to me. Really not sure what happened there.

    3. Yeah, your mail must have gotten diverted to my zip code, because we’ve been receiving mountains of mail, mostly from the 8th CD Congressional campaigns, and the special interests against 1631 & for 1634. There have been days when I’ve gotten 6 political mailings, in the same day, some with multiple from the same campaign. It’s gotten downright silly. The only mailing I paid any real attention to was the handwritten postcard from my local Dem organization with a list of endorsed candidates. It was in multiple-color pen. Of course, those candidates already had my vote, but it goes a long way to have volunteers WRITING a postcard or letter versus the same old tired cheap glossy photoshopped garbage that the big money campaigns send.

    4. King County Elections will provide a list of address that have returned their ballots. Once your house has returned its ballot(s), the smart campaigns stop sending mail to your address. Vote early and the junk mail stops.

      1. Nah. That hasn’t been my experience at all over the years. I usually vote shortly after receiving my ballot and return it right away and I still have these mailers showing up in my box right up to the election. Perhaps these campaigns aren’t so “smart” or already have allocated the resources for these mailings and thus won’t bother to do another mailing list culling. One thing that most campaigns seem to be pretty proficient at is limiting the mailings to one registered voter per household address. This has improved dramatically over, say, what used to be the case like a decade or so ago.

        FWIW….I too consider these campaign pieces to be largely junk mail and thus get treated as such when they arrive in our household’s incoming stack of mail.

      2. I’ve been part of the process several times, I know what I’m talking about.

        Also, everyone in my house voted within 5 days of receiving our ballots and the only election materials we have received this week have been the bilingual No on 1631 pieces. All the other campaigns have removed our address from their mailing lists.

      3. FWIW … I put my ballot in a drop box the day after I received it. I have noticed a very distinct decrease in mailers since, but not a complete disappearance.

      4. Again, FWIW. I just checked on what mailers we have sitting in our recycling pile. This household dropped off our ballots in a county drop box on Oct 23rd. Since then, we have received two mailers for the Yes on I-1634 and one for a local race. 507&election_year=2018

        Check out the expenditures for detailed information on the companies that benefitted from all of these slick mailers. It’s kind of interesting to see the details.

    5. It may not be much, but I’ve invented an exercise that every voter should do every day, for the health of the Republic. From votes to purchases, live your life so it’s impossible to categorize you.

      For elections where it really doesn’t matter who you vote for, scatter your loyalty across all party lines for the weirdest of both, same election But if you want to counter-cross-characterize as best for our country, either write in or actually run for jobs like Cemetery Commissioner.

      Which could lead you (seriously) to a career in both civil engineering and public administration that could give you your choice at Metro and Sound Transit for either tunnel-boring or water quality.

      Online, you can blow out your enemies’ every server all the way up to the secret ones on the moon- bet Putin’s got one on Soyuz. You’ll have them helpless.

      And at very least, you’ll get to try so many different brands (not of Rapid Rides!) you’ll possibly come to realize that Starbucks coffee actually is better than the fifty dollars a cup ones from Indonesia. Google “Luwak.”

      Which if you choose instead, will put you in a category that no professional trend-guesser even wants to think about. Or even better, that your political opponents will publicly advocate for their MAGA-imitation hats Cute teddy bears too.

      But to really make the foe go from espionage to the historicotechnicalmilitaristc:

      Streetcar oriented Proof that Trieste Italy used to be in same empire as Austria:

      And reason Polish jokes aren’t a very good idea:


  3. I love this about Washington state. Just fill out your ballot when you have time, whenever you want. As noted above, you should leave some time if you plan to mail your ballot, but no matter what you can go to a drop box and be 100% sure it gets delivered. You can do it on the way to work.

  4. Every state should be able to vote like we do in washington. When I see on the news lines of people standing in some other state while waiting to vote at a machine I cringe.

    1. Sadly, the goal in many states is to make voting more difficult (for poor people and minorities), rather than easier.

    2. And to think of how easy it is in WA and still turnout is low. I wonder if we went back to polling stations and long lines if the turnout would be much lower. People will either vote or they won’t. There are ZERO excuses for anyone not to vote, everything is done for them, and turnout is still low. If a long line deters anyone from voting, they obviously don’t care enough. And I’ve sat in plenty of long lines.

      1. In State of Washington, I wonder if non-voters fall into several groups. One, personally doing very well, which nothing on the ballot carries the threat of changing.

        Two, people who don’t see present slate of candidates as being worth a spot of ink Sharpie ink. Same for the candidates themselves, and their programs- hundedth power,

        Third are the people whom I think both candidates and incumbents had better start watching if they value their lives, in addition to their elections.

        Whose next votes nobody now in office is going to like at all, whether they go into a box or mail slot or the chamber of a shotgun. People who’ve finally decided they’ve worked and lived in Seattle too long to be evicted.

        Especially from the car they’ve been going to work from since their house got repossessed. Sharing with the Sheriff’s department the assessment of the chance of a murder conviction for someone defending their house. Or car. Or tent.

        By a jury with same eviction notice in the mail. By 2020, neither Donald Trump nor the NRA having anything to do with it. Anymore than anyone in office now. Demographic? History’s every revolutionary.

        People with a world of ability, character and spirit, none of whom can afford the rent in Hell. Who’ll be both glad and picky to vote. when next they have a voting address not on wheels or under a tarp.


    3. “If a long line deters anyone from voting, they obviously don’t care enough.”

      Families with children and people working 80 hours at three jobs have other responsibilities too. And the problem in some states is not just long lines, but closing polling places to create those long lines in certain precincts, rejecting masses of people who stand in those lines, and giving them a big confusing runaround when they reach the precinct desk.

      It will get better as soon as a critical mass gets into power in each state that wants to help all eligible voters vote successfully rather than trying to prevent voters who may vote the wrong way from voting. It’s still possible that it will eventually turn around, but the window is starting to close, in that the vote-preventers might get their own critical mass in the courts, Congress, and state legislatures to implement full-on authoritarianism that nobody can dismantle (the Russia/Poland/Hungary model).

      1. The lines effectively create a cap on the number of people that can vote in any given precinct. Just like only so many cars can fit down I-5 between 7 and 9 AM, only so many voters can cast their ballets per hour, and each polling place is only open for so many hours. Once you hit this cap, more people wanting to vote cannot increase turnout any further – it just means longer lines, and more people being turned away when the polls finally close for the night.

        Of course, even before this cap is completely reached, the lines get longer and longer, the point where only the most dedicated are willing to wait in it to cast a single vote. This is a huge problem for Democratic Senate candidates across the country, since their ability to win depends on running up the turnout in dense, urban precincts that vote Democrat by huge margins, often exceeding 80-90%. The Republicans, by a large, don’t face this problem, since their voters are coming from sparser areas, and won’t hit the cap. They also do well with older voters, who are likely retired, and able to vote in the middle of a weekday, when the lines are shorter because everyone else is at work.

        The Republicans know this, and use it to their fullest advantage. This is a large reason why candidates such Claire McCaskill and Beto O’Rourke have such an uphill battle – they have to get *their* voters motivated enough to stand in line significantly longer than the average voter for their Republican opponent. And, it makes the miracle that Doug Jones was able to pull off in Alabama all that much more impressive (and all that much less likely to be replicated in 2020).

      2. I have not heard of an example in recent history where polls turned away voters who were in line on time.

        There are plenty of other ways to cause mischief, such as racially profiling voters for a challenge by a party officer, to make them offer more ID than other voters in line (in hopes they didn’t bring it), using defective equipment in polls where the other party dominates, having fewer polling sites in areas where the other party dominates, making polling sites inaccessible by transit, including rural areas where the site could be miles away, scrubbing voter rolls a little too vigorously, hiring a contractor to do the scrubbing so the contractor can be blamed (and then re-hired), and not having enough machines to handle the volume of voters even if they aren’t defective.

        And then there is this one: “finding” an additional tray of ballots in a secure area, professing not to know where it came from, but have it full of ballots that look legit, scrubbing voting records while vote counting is going on (Seriously, when would staff have time to do this? — that was sheer baloney), and getting help from the administrator’s boss to find a job somewhere else out of state as quickly as possible. Guess where this happened?

      3. It’s less people waiting in line being denied (though this does happen), more people aren’t able to wait for 4-5 hours in that line to vote.

    4. An interesting thought experiment – for the states that don’t have Washington’s Vote By Mail system, what if each of the two political parties had the option to pay for the costs of staffing additional polling place locations/hours where they think it would benefit them? I would expect, at least for the Democrats, that expanded polling hours would produce a huge bang-for-the-buck compared to TV commercials.

      In practice, I don’t see a system like this ever happening (the Republicans would never allow it because it would disproportionately benefit the Democrats, even if it would save taxpayer money by outsourcing some of the election administration costs to the various super PAC’s; they would much rather just try to suppress the vote in Democratic-leaning areas as much as possible).

      1. Before either mail or computer voting, common for campaign volunteers to drive people to the polls. And off-site from the polls, explain mechanics of voting.

        Now, Uber could be another choice. But don’t think either party can prevent the other one from doing it. But judging from what I’m hearing from voters, candidate with absolutely no robocalls will get their own statue pressing a doorbell.

        Wouldn’t doubt how many candidates are already sending robocalls saying their opponent approved the message.

        Though first Hero of the Revolution will be the one who says, on one of his very few TV adds, with his pen poised: “I approved this message just now when I got done writing it.”

        Also, all candidates make all their account books available to the voters, proudly proving absence of a single super-pac. While helping their opponents out by generously reporting all of theirs.

        But behind it all, I’m getting the sense that voters on all sides are starting to gag on sheer amount of money being spent on adds they hate.

        Personally, I think that by law or custom, I don’t want all campaign’s coverage going to how much money everybody is spending. You’d think amount of voters’ money somebody’s spent themselves isn’t good recommend for fiscal responsibility.

        If I were running, to every TV query about my spending, answer is “Nothing”. Driving my opponents to exaggerate theirs just to show they’re better than me. And even have all their donors verify how much they’ve given to beat me. While ragging on them for being losers.

        Sad. Unfair. And nobody in history has ever treated anybody else this bad.


      2. If Uber and Lyft gave free rides to the polls, that would be an excellent public service. However, if they only did it in selected areas, that might be deemed an illegal campaign contribution, or something of the sort.

        Consider the tent cities, though, where there is not ready access to receive mail (that would mean a trip to pick up at “General Delivery”). At least now they don’t have to make a second trip to a drop box in order to avoid a de facto poll tax. With the voter registration period now overlapping with voting, everything can be done in one trip, at the County Administration Building.

        I wonder if making transit free on Election Day would be legal.

  5. And to “Seattle”, add Kent, Auburn, Tacoma, Olympia, and Chehalis. Not like the old days when if you couldn’t afford Seattle or any of those other five places, you could still afford someplace else.


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