Oregon and Washington: Late to the Party or Just On Time?

A Boise Public Radio story today describes Oregon and Washington, the only fully vote by mail states in the nation, as late to the party:

But the push for “early voting” across the country is making vote-by-mail states look like late arrivals to the party. In Idaho, voters in some counties have been going to the polls since late September.

Here’s an alternative interpretation: Oregon and Washington realize that it does not take two months to deliver a vote by mail ballot a few miles verssus the few thousand miles that it takes to deliver a UOCAVA ballot.

Perhaps Oregon and Washington are latecomers to the party.  All that is left on the table are a few meager morsels.  The bar closed long ago.

Perhaps they are not late to the party after all.  Perhaps the thirty states that mailed their absentee ballots in September (led by North Carolina, a superbly administered state, yet mailed ballots way back on September 6th) are like those early arriving guests, knocking on your door when you don’t even have the hors d’oeuvres ready.  Give them some cold cheese slices!

Somehow, Oregon and Washington manage to mail their ballots just over two weeks before Election Day yet still rank near the top in terms of voter participation.  It seems to me that the two states time things just right, and it’s those states that encourage voters to cast a ballot two months before Election Day that may need to rethink things.