Missouri Jews can use rabbis’ note to get absentee ballots
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Missouri Jews can use rabbis’ note to get absentee ballots

Elections are coming up.

But your state only allows absentee voting for a specific list of causes — and the reasonable fear of getting covid-19 is not one of them. And with your state under Republican control, that fear’s not likely to be added to the list of acceptable causes any time soon.

What to do?

If you’re in Missouri, now you can claim a religious requirement to vote absentee.

A letter organized by the Jewish Community Relations Council and signed by 32 rabbis, three cantors, and Maharat Rori Picker Neiss, the council’s executive director, says that during times of danger, “it is a deeply-held religious belief” to stay at home, even on Election Day.

The letter notes that “Our Jewish tradition values human life above virtually all else,” and that in this time of pandemic, “our community has recognized the need to forgo all of our in-person religious rituals in the hopes of protecting the lives of those around us.”

Missouri holds municipal elections on June 2, rescheduled from April 7.

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