Let’s push for the election Kentucky deserves | Kentuckians For The Commonwealth

Let’s push for the election Kentucky deserves

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Note: The Election Kentucky Deserves was sent on August 12 as an open letter to Secretary of State Michael Adams, Governor Andy Beshear and all members of the State Board of Elections from 54 Kentucky organizations.

Most Kentuckians agree that our democracy works best when we all have a voice and a vote in the decisions impacting our lives.

In this year’s primary election, many Kentuckians could vote early or by mail for the very first time and overwhelmingly chose those options. We had record voter turnout and largely did it safely from our homes. It wasn’t perfect. But that’s something to celebrate in any election and especially in the middle of a pandemic.

Now the risk of COVID-19 is greater than ever. Kentucky has the opportunity to improve upon that election process and give Kentuckians the election we deserve – one that makes voting safe, convenient, secure and robust.

What we Need for a Safe and Accessible Election

  • Free mail-in option for all Kentuckians, without an extra step to mail an application.
  • Early in-person voting for weeks before Election Day, including evening and weekend hours so essential workers and others can find time to vote.
  • More polling locations than in the primary, particularly in our most populous counties.
  • Polling locations open late – until 8 p.m. or 9 p.m. on Election Day .
  • Accurate and public-facing ballot tracking, including whether someone’s vote counted or was rejected, with an option to fix or resubmit rejected ballots.
  • Publicly-accessible drop boxes for ballots.
  • Community input at the county and state levels – voters deserve to provide input on the process.
  • No new photo ID rules (SB 2) so people don’t need to photocopy ID when voting by mail and there’s no confusion about what ID people need to vote.
  • A well-funded public information campaign to spread the word about changes to the election process statewide, with a focus on communities with low voter turnout and limited access to the internet and libraries.
  • Include www.CivilRightsRestoration.KY.gov so the 170,000 Kentuckians whose voting rights were respected through Governor Beshear’s executive action know that they can vote.
  • Accessible election materials: large print for Kentuckians with visual impairments, written at a 4th grade reading level, include visual guides, and Spanish translation in counties with a significant Spanish-speaking population.
  • Strong poll worker training: accessible, vast and starts as soon as possible.
  • Resources for voters to ask and get answers to questions: a statewide hotline staffed by well-trained workers and a centralized website sharing each county’s voting process and hours.

 

Please reach out to the Secretary of State, the governor and/or the State Board of Elections and share your top priorities from the list above in your own words. Or just say something like “We need to keep a vote-by-mail option for all Kentuckians next election.” 

Secretary of State Michael Adams

Phone - 502-564-3490

Contact Form - https://www.sos.ky.gov/pages/contact.aspx

Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/MichaelGAdamsNews

Or on Twitter at @KYSecState (also, feel free to use the hashtag #TogetherKy)


Governor Andy Beshear

Phone - 502-564-2611

Contact Form - https://governor.ky.gov/contact/contact-us

Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/GovAndyBeshear

Or on Twitter @GovAndyBeshear (also, feel free to use the hashtag #TogetherKy)


State Board of Elections

Phone - 800-246-1399

Email - Jared.Dearing@ky.gov

 

Also, please consider coming to these related online events this week:

Voting Rights Campaign Webinar - Wed, August 12 at 7 p.m. ET -  Join the fight to restore the right to vote of people with felonies in their past. Learn about the history of this campaign, where we are now and what you can do to make sure everyone with a felony in their past can vote. 

This Is What Democracy Looks Like: The Movement for Voting Rights Restoration - Thurs, August 13, 6 p.m. ET  A national call including our own Tayna Fogle from Kentucky. 


Voting Rights Phonebank
- Thurs, August 13 at 7 p.m. ET - We’ll be calling voters to talk about restoration of voting rights for people with felonies in their past and building support. We’ll use a system called “CallHub” so you can use your phone and computer to call people, and we’ll start with a group training.  

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