The negotiations in Congress for the next coronavirus relief bill are ongoing, and one portion that focuses on small businesses may be finalized as soon as Monday. Please call Senators Feinstein and Harris and Rep. Garamendi today and ask them to include protections for voters in the relief bill. We saw how Republicans were willing to use the pandemic to try to suppress voting in Wisconsin's April 7th election. Though they failed to get the election result they wanted, they succeeded in making voting dangerous for everyone who was forced to brave the pandemic to vote.
For the next coronavirus relief bill, we're asking our members of Congress to insist on safety measures for the next election so that we can protect our democracy while protecting each other:
States must expand vote by mail, extend voting deadlines, increase early voting days, and communicate extensively with voters about date changes, polling closures, or other critical election information
States must expand online and/or automatic voter registration
The federal government can assist by funding election infrastructure, requiring no-excuse absentee voting in federal elections, and provide additional drop-boxes for ballots in federal buildings and post offices
In-person voting locations must be provided with sanitization equipment and have safe distancing guidelines
Congress must approve at least $4 billion in funding to implement these changes
We have to act now to ensure that the November election can happen safely as planned and without disenfranchising any voter, even under pandemic conditions.
We can happily report that Senator Harris has introduced the VoteSafe Act of 2020 which includes many of these protections; we will thank her and ask her to fight to get these within the coronavirus relief bill rather than as a standalone. You can find an example call script below.
Action Coffee resumes virtually, Mondays at 10am. Grab your mid-morning coffee and join us on Zoom (https://zoom.us/j/721847201). We'll talk through Indivisible Yolo's action of the week, call or email our representatives, talk politics, and stay connected to each other and the work in this challenging time.
Action: Ask our Members of Congress to protect democracy while we protect each other:
Sample Call Script for Sen. Harris: Hello, my name is [YOUR NAME] and I'm a constituent from [CITY or zip code]. I’m calling to say I SUPPORT the voter protections in Senator Harris' VoteSafe Act, and to ask her to fight to include these protections in the next coronavirus relief bill rather than just as a standalone bill. Thank you!
Sample Call Script for Sen. Feinstein:
Hello, my name is [YOUR NAME] and I'm a constituent from [CITY or zip code]. I’m very concerned about how the COVID-19 outbreak will affect the functioning of our democratic processes, particularly in-person voting. I want to thank Senator Feinstein for cosponsoring the Natural Disaster and Emergency Ballot Act of 2020, and to ask her to go further by fighting to include the protections from Senator Warren's Election Protection plan and Senator Harris' VoteSafe Act in the next coronavirus relief bill. Thank you!
Sample Call Script for Rep. Garamendi:
Hello, my name is [YOUR NAME] and I'm a constituent from [CITY or zip code]. I’m very concerned about how the COVID-19 outbreak will affect the functioning of our democratic processes, particularly in-person voting. States need more robust vote-by-mail systems, and protections for in-person voting.
Will Representative Garamendi fight to include the protections from Senator Warren's Election Protection plan and Senator Harris' VoteSafe Act in the next coronavirus relief bill?
Both Senator Harris and Senator Feinstein have cosponsored the Natural Disaster and Emergency Ballot Act of 2020, and we're glad of their stance on this, and for Sen. Harris' VoteSafe bill- we're just asking them to go a little further to make sure these protections are included in the coronavirus relief bill. Rep. Garamendi has gone on record opposing the voter suppression efforts in Wisconsin; now we're asking him for concrete action to protect voters.