I got my absentee ballot for Santa Clara County yesterday. I vote absentee because I'm usually not home during the day to vote in person; it's just much more convenient. In Seattle, absentee voting was great: I could fill it in easily at home, and post it as late as election day. Here in Santa Clara County, though, I can turn the ballot in in person (sorta defeats "absentee" voting), or I have to post it so they receive it by election day. Er, that's pretty broken. For one, I have to predict how long the post office will take to deliver my ballot, and post it that far in advance. Then, that means that any campaigning, debating, etc. that might take place in the last days before the election, can't be used to help me make my choice. The ACLU is getting bothered by hanging-chad style ballots, but I'd think that a ballot that must be sent off before the campaigning is complete would be a worse cause for disenfranchisement of the electorate.