Voting During COVID-19

This task force gives students the responsibility of considering solutions for voting during a pandemic to increase voter participation, while also ensuring the safety of voters.

Task Force: Voting During COVID-19

Congratulations!

You have been tasked with making sure that every person who is eligible and wants to vote in the 2020 election can do so safely during the pandemic. Unfortunately, the impact of COVID-19 spills over to election time because people are afraid to go to voting areas in their local communities and exercise their right. 

Why Are We Doing This?:

There are already existing reasons and issues that people do not exercise their right to vote. Tragically, COVID-19 is making some of those reasons/issues more complicated. Here, we ask you to consider solutions for voting during a pandemic to increase voter participation, while also ensuring the safety of voters.

Steps:

  1. Choose which solutions you would recommend for ensuring everyone’s right to vote during COVID-19. 
    1. Options: 
      1. Expand vote by mail for everyone who wants it
      2. Require voting by mail for all voters
      3. Sending all registered voters absentee ballots
      4. Open more polling locations so they are less crowded 
      5. Make it easier to register to vote online 
      6. Hiring sanitation workers to keep polling locations clean 
      7. Hiring only young people to work at the polling places 
    2. Feel free to change these options in whatever way you please, and try to describe the procedure more specifically (i.e. what does opening more polling locations look like?).
    3. Will all states be required to implement this option or will it be decided by each state? 
      1. How will you consider population size if the plan is to be implemented at a federal level?
  2. Think through the possible objections about your suggestions that someone could have and how you would answer them. 
  3. Share with the group and see if you can convince them that your solution solves the problems of safety and participation during elections. 

Things to Keep in Mind:

  • You do not have to worry about every single option. 
    • Focus on 2-3 policies that you are prepared to defend.
  • Try to make suggestions that are practical.
  • Consider how the option you choose would be implemented in states.
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