The coronavirus pandemic continues to ripple through the nation's electoral system.
While there's a two-week break in the presidential contest, judges and state officials have made another series of decisions in recent days designed to make voting easier and safer while the nation is largely locked down.
Registration for the next major Democratic primary, in Wisconsin, has been extended. The next two congressional special elections will be conducted by mail, and it's likely that so will much of the Ohio primary postponed last week at the final hour. The number of states with postponed presidential primaries moved toward nine. Runoffs in four states have also been delayed, while petition drives to get referendums on the ballot in two states were put on hold.
High voter turnout was both a blessing and a curse on Super Tuesday. While more participation in elections gave civic advocates something to cheer about, long lines in two of the biggest states plus a wave of online disinformation left voting rights groups with a to-do list before the next primaries.
During the biggest day of voting in the Democratic presidential contest, hotlines operated in 11 languages by a coalition of progressive groups fielded more than 2,000 calls from voters expressing concern and confusion.
But as the polls started to close Tuesday evening, representatives of the so-called Election Protection coalition, led by the Lawyer's Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, told reporters they believe the primaries in all 14 states generally went off with few if any hitches.
Deadly storms in at least two Super Tuesday states and coronavirus anxieties nationwide are complicating efforts to boost turnout and ease confidence in the results from the nation's most important day of voting ahead of November.
Efforts to get democracy working more smoothly are almost always focused on human behavior, from making it easier for people to vote to rewarding collaboration among partisan politicians. This time, unpredictably treacherous weather and the unpredictable spread of disease are conspiring to make things much more difficult for Democrats casting ballots to award a third of their presidential delegates.
- Meet anti-corruption organizers in your area.
- Learn about what you can do to help unrig our system both locally and nationally.
- Discuss the American Anti-Corruption Act and what we can do to support it.
If you are interested in making Bay Area work for everyday people want to learn how you can contribute, join the presentation and become a part of the movement!
Location: Berkeley Bowl West Community Room, 920 Heinz Ave., Berkeley, CA