Preparing for an election during a pandemic

Sunday, July 19, 2020 - 12:30 in Psychology & Sociology

State election officials are bracing for two trains on a possible collision course this fall: potential record turnout for the Nov. 3 general election, and an expected surge of the highly contagious and sometimes deadly COVID-19. Besides health concerns over so many voters clustered together in line, election officials also fear that poll workers, who are often older than 60 and thus at higher risk for COVID complications, will be hard to find this fall. Just such staffing shortages prompted some states to significantly reduce the number of polling locations during the recent primaries, contributing to hours-long waiting times in predominantly African American precincts in Georgia, Kentucky, and Wisconsin. In response, most states are considering more socially distanced methods, with voting by mail or curbside voting among the most popular. And those are just some of the logistical problems. Like mask-wearing, adapting election preparations to the COVID-19 era has quickly taken on...

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