FILE - In this Feb. 10, 2019 file photo, Fiona Whelan Prine, left, and John Prine arrive at the 61st annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles. The wife of the late celebrated singer-songwriter John Prine, who died from complications of COVID-19, is urging lawmakers to expand absentee voting so Tennesseans would not have to put their health at risk exercising their right to vote. Fiona Whelan Prine told a Senate panel Tuesday that allowing more people to cast an absentee ballot was critical in ensuring that people would remain safe and healthy during the 2020 election. Whelan Prine also contracted the coronavirus, but she has since recovered. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP, File)

Why Absentee Votes should be expanded

NASVHILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Fiona Welhan, wife of John Prine, recommended that the absentee ballots be expanded in Tennessee. John Prine died from COVID-19 recently and his wife has now contracted it.

Fiona Welhan Prine advocated to have an expansion of absentee votes to eliminate risks of getting the outbreak virus at voting polls. That way more people will remain healthy and safe by not having to go out for wanting to exercise their voting rights.

Tennessee election officials have debated if voting should be by mail. This debate has been going on since May and Fiona’s concerns were discussed by the Senate panel during a live stream right before the final decision on the voting.

Since the officials could not execute a plan then that would ensure Tennesseans’ safety by casting the ballots by mail, they are now facing three lawsuits.

Welhan Prine witnessed her husband go through such a trying time and while he was hospitalized. He was “unrecognizable” from how he looked before being there, she stated.

The concerns of the public did not go unnoticed as the judge ruled that the people of Tennessee can vote by mail for the 2020 elections. The Secretary of State did not concede voting by mail, but until it is appealed all registered voters will be given the chance to vote by mail.

“I do not wish this pain and trauma on any other American family, especially not my fellow Tennesseans,” Welhan Prine said, which is why she wanted initiated the discussion with a Senate panel to ensure the safety of others.

The deadline to request a vote by mail is July 30 for the election on August 6. Also, to get an absentee ballot it should be requested by the voter and can be printed to mail, scan, fax, as an attachment.

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