The challenges of living away

Yoli remains a Bolivian citizen, though she lives in the U.S. as a permanent resident. That situation can be uncomfortable come election time.

Problem 1: She can’t vote. The Bolivian constitution provides for absentee voting, but unfortunately the Bolivian government is far from being capable of making this a reality. Essentially, Bolivian ex-patriates (and there are a lot of them here in the States and in Europe) are disenfranchised.

Problem 2: She was chosen to work the polls this year. In Bolivia everything related to the elections carries penalties. The government selects people to man the polls, and if you don’t show up, you risk being fined or jailed. Obviously this is tricky for us, but we sent a copy of our marriage certificate to prove that she is living in the U.S. and not in Bolivia. Funnily enough, this also happened when Yoli was in the U.S. the first time (2001).