Ahead of the November election, more than 17 million Americans have submitted ballots, despite President Donald Trump's continued claims that the process is illegitimate. In Oregon, residents have voted by mail for more than 20 years and according to Governor Kate Brown, the process is completely safe.
"We were the first state in the country [to vote by mail], and I will tell you we have one of the highest voter turnouts in the country because of the convenience and the accessibility of vote-by-mail," she told Cheddar, touting how the concept will likely stick around after the coronavirus pandemic.
For many voters, the 2020 election will be the first time they have ever submitted a paper ballot, but according to Brown, voting at home can do even more to ease the minds of Americans, particularly as it helps mitigate the spread of coronavirus and introduces them to how "non-hackable" the process is.
Now, Brown is rallying for Americans to trust the process, submit their votes as early as possible, and know that their vote counts.
"I literally won my first race for the statehouse by seven votes," she explained.
While Trump's U.S. Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett is likely to be confirmed, the 2020 election, Brown said, will determine the direction of American democracy.
"What is really, really, really clear is that when the fabric of our society is frayed. It's so important that the foundation of our democracy remains strong, and voting is a pillar of that democracy," she noted.
When it comes to voter registration, Brown said the process needs to be simplified to make it easier for Americans to take part in the political process. Earlier this week, a judge in Virginia extended voter registration after a cable was cut, taking down the entire voter registration website.
"By virtue of your citizenship, residency, and your age, you should be able to participate in this process," the governor said. "Oregon, again, leading the way with our automatic voter registration."
"We know that the democratic process is not a spectator sport. We need Americans participating."