ACLU follow up letter urging COVID-19 voting legislation 3.22.2020

Document Date: March 22, 2020

Following up on our March 20 letter urging inclusion in the third stimulus legislation specific provisions to address the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the 2020 elections, this letter underscores the importance of Congress enacting substantial federal funding immediately and federal requirements for no-excuse mail-in absentee voting and early in-person voting. Without considerable funding and these minimum federal standards, states may not be able to achieve no-excuse absentee mail-in voting without overcoming existing legislative or state constitutional blocks. A federal mandate is necessary to guarantee states can overcome these hurdles so states can proceed to institute these changes and do it rapidly. Congress has the power to preempt these existing state law restrictions quickly, allowing states to immediately move ahead with plans to expand vote by mail and early in-person voting to their entire populations.