Senators look for options to protecting Americans’ right to vote


WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — As states around the country are expected to follow the example of Ohio, Indiana and Connecticut by delaying their upcoming primaries to prevent the spread of coronavirus, some lawmakers are pushing what they consider a safer alternative.

“We should be able to keep voting and conducting elections even in the middle of this global pandemic,” Delaware Sen. Chris Coons said.

Coons wants to pass a bill requiring states allow all voters 20 days of early voting by mail, before other primaries and the national election in November.

Illinois Sen. Richard Durbin supports the idea.

“I hope we can find a mechanism to guarantee elections really do reflect the sentiment of the American populace,” Durbin said.

Some senators believe there might be other options to explore, while some say now is not the time to discuss this.

“Election assistance funding? That has nothing to do with COVID-19,” Tennessee Sen. Marsha Blackburn said.

Blackburn believes election discussions should wait until after they’ve passed the current stimulus package, but with the election seven months away, Ohio Sen. Robert Portman and West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin say absentee and even drive-thru voting could provide a quick solution.

“Everybody can vote absentee. I think that’s really important,” Portman said.

“You drive by, they give you a ballot, you vote in your car. You can basically give it right back to them and move on,” Manchin said.

These senators believe they need to make a decision soon to protect the election process.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

CBS47 On Your Side

Do you have a problem that you need help solving? Contact CBS47 and let us be On Your Side.

Phone: 559-761-0383

Don’t Miss

Best of the Valley
Sunday Morning Matters
MedWatch Today
Hispanic Heritage
Bulldog Insider: The Podcast
The Valley's Armenia
Pros Who Know

Images from Armenia

Small patients in Armenia
Yerevan by night.
Dr. Jeff Thomas delivers.
Dr. Jeff Thomas delivers in Gyumri.
Doctors unpack medical supplies from The Central Valley.
Fresno Medical Mission at work.
Medical Supplies being unloaded.
Fresno Medical Mission at the ready.
KSEE24 crew witnesses the miracle of life in Gyumri, Armenia.
Life saving work of Central Valley surgeons in Armenia.
Ribbon cutting on new surgical center in Ashtarak Armenia. Fresno donors made this dream come true.
KSEE24 on assignment with the Fresno Medical Mission
Honorary Consulate to Armenia Berj Apkarian explains the crisis facing one hospital.
KSEE24's Stefani Booroojian and Kevin Mahan at the meeting with President Bako Sahakyan.
Medical Meeting in Artsakh.
The President of Artsakh meets with the Fresno Medical Mission.
Learning modern medicine techniques with the Fresno Medical Mission in surgery.
Leaning in for a look. Dr. Brien Tonkinson holds class and helps a patient in Armenia.
Fresno Medical Mission cares on one of the smallest patients in the region. Six-year old Yanna receives life-changing better breathing surgery.