What to Know About the Coronavirus: Democrats in Congress have introduced emergency legislation to fund mail-in voting and help poll workers purchase cleaning supplies in the event that 25 percent of all states declare a state of emergency, but it remains unclear whether it will pass. (read more)
Not all states have taken steps to balance access to voting and protecting public health, either. Louisiana and Georgia, two states already grappling with a poor record of election security, have postponed their presidential primary elections. Wyoming canceled its in-person voting and will implement a vote-by-mail and ballot drop-off system. (read more)
In the meantime, what can voters do? The ACLU created a website with the absentee ballot application process for every state that hasn’t voted yet. If that affects you, check out the ACLU’s website here.
Election safety tip: If you’re planning to vote in person tomorrow or in the coming weeks, be sure to give yourself some distance while standing in line. Keep some tissues and hand sanitizer in the car or your pocket.
Also — wash your hands, wash your hands, wash your hands!
GOP 2020 Playbook — Purge the Voter Rolls: A conservative Wisconsin law firm is back in court to try to remove more than 200,000 individuals from the state’s voter registration database. The Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty asked the Wisconsin Supreme Court to overturn an appeals court ruling that stopped the state’s Election Commission from purging the rolls. (read more)
Trump’s FEC Nominee Grilled Over Gerrymandering Past: After more than two years, Texas-based GOP attorney James E. “Trey” Trainor finally received a confirmation hearing.
Democrats focused largely on Trainor’s past involvement in gerrymandering and questioned his fitness to serve on the Federal Election Commission, with ranking member of the Senate Rules Committee Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) accusing Trainor of not believing in “basic campaign finance” laws. (read more)
Lawsuit Alleges Native American Voter Suppression: For Native Americans, many of whom live on reservations in rural areas, casting a ballot can often mean an hours-long drive to vote. In states like North Dakota and Montana, traveling to a polling place in November can be especially daunting. So, tribal communities have in the past relied on ballot collecting efforts, because an individual voter could drop off up to 100 ballots.
But a new Montana law effectively ended this process by limiting the number of ballots to six — and just a few, specific family members are allowed to collect ballots. The Native American Rights Fund, ACLU, and ACLU of Montana filed a lawsuit last week alleging the law will mean “many Native Americans living on rural reservations will be effectively unable to vote.” (read more)
WhoWhatWhy and readers’ picks of the week:
Many New Voting Systems Aren’t Ready for Prime Time (Truthdig)
Many Eligible Georgia Voters Were Canceled in Nation’s Largest Purge (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)
More Than a Thousand Illinois Voters Mistakenly Dubbed Not Registered in Latest Electoral Flub (Chicago Sun Times)
Florida Lawmakers Ready to Cut Some Corners to Get Faster Election Results (Miami Herald)