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Maryland voters gear up for first election during coronavirus

Posted at 9:30 PM, Apr 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-22 23:17:26-04

BALTIMORE — In one week Maryland will have its first election since the Coronavirus outbreak. Nobody wants to be in a place that has large crowds, which you might see at a polling location.

The State Board of Elections proactively sent out absentee ballots for every voter. The postage is already paid for, all you have to do is follow the instructions and drop it in the mailbox.

Sam Novey with Baltimore Votes said the goal is to make it so voters don’t have to choose between their health and their vote.

“In the state of Maryland we’re committed to making sure that we don’t need to choose between our health and our democracy,” Novey said.

There will still be a small amount of in person voting locations where workers will make sure there is social distancing for people who can’t do it through the mail.

Novey said he understands concerns over lost ballots and fraud but says nearly a third of people voted by mail in 2018 with little issue.

“There are a number of states, there are 5 states actually that already conduct the election by mail every time even when it’s not coronavirus,” Novey said.

The No Boundaries Coalition is based out of West Baltimore.

Ashiah Parker said their focus is getting people to excessive their right by sharing information on candidates and how to vote.

“We’re really pushing to make sure residents know the procedures, the dates, and everything so everyone can be involved in this process,” Parker said. “It’s so important and it cannot be pushed under the rug because we have other health concerns and things going on right now.”

You can make sure you get your ballot by going to the Board of elections website here.

“Update your voter registration with the state of Maryland because they are going to mail the ballot to the address they have on file.”

Novey said they are doing what they can to take make voting fun, even in these stressful times.

“In the past we’ve always done parties at the polls. This year we are going to do parties at the mailbox,” he said.

Next Tuesday is the Special Election for the 7th Congressional District, that’s the seat formally held by the late Congressman Elijah Cummings.

They are going to send out another round for the June 2 primary election you can expect them by mid May.