Election 2020 is in less than two weeks. I encourage all Saints to vote – in other words, to hire the women and men who will represent you in local, state and federal governments. Your vote will help determine policies and funding that will affect our society, our economy, the relationships we have with other nations, and the care we take of our planet. Every vote counts. Every single one.

If you are registered, make a plan to vote, one that adheres to COVID-19 health and safety guidelines. In New York, you can request an absentee ballot here by October 27 and mail it with a postmark on or before Election Day on Tuesday, November 3, or return it in person to your district’s Board of Elections by that date. You must request your absentee ballot as soon as possible so it can be received, completed and mailed back in time. If you live locally, you can wear a mask and vote in person. If your home is outside New York, please go to vote.org for details on how you can register and vote. More voter information – including hard copy absentee ballot forms for New York residents and details about early voting (October 24 – November 1 in New York) – is available at Lonnstrom Dining Hall or by emailing vote@siena.edu.

In my lifetime, I cannot remember an election season that was so contentious. I am hoping we can all bring our Franciscan values to bear on selecting the candidates we feel can do the best job in representing us and our country. Voting is a right, and a responsibility, and I hope that each and every one of you will exercise it this year.  

If you haven’t seen Siena’s “Why I’m Voting” video encouraging you to cast your ballot, please take a couple minutes to view it. We all have a reason to show up – what’s yours?

I hope that you will join me and my family in voting this year, to choose our elected officials and to ensure that the amazing American experiment of freedom and self-governance continues.