Secretary of State Kyle Ardoin discusses postponed elections
Today, Secretary of State Kyle Ardoin held a press conference to address the postponement of elections due to COVID-19.
The health and safety of Louisiana residents is critical, and we want to do our part to prevent the spread of this highly infectious disease. One key stakeholder in our decision is our election day polling commissioners. Over half of Louisiana’s polling commissioners are over the age of 65, and the CDC warns that the older adults; people who have serious chronic medical conditions such as: heart disease, diabetes or lung disease are the people most at risk for serious illness from COVID-19.
Louisiana law allows for the postponement of an election due to an emergency or common disaster occurring before or during a regularly scheduled or special election, and today Secretary Ardoin exercised that option. “Today, I have certified that a state of emergency exists, and requested that the Governor issue an executive order postponing the spring elections” Secretary Ardoin said Friday, “We have requested postponing the April 4 Presidential Preference Primary and Municipal Primary until June 20 and postponing the May 9 General election until July 25.”
The 2-month delay will allow our office to continue to procure necessary supplies to put our state in the best possible posture to conduct elections. Attached is the emergency certification sent to Governor John Bel Edwards.
Listed below are a few of the CDC recommendations for elections and election officials we are recommending and following:
- Stay at home if you have fever, respiratory symptoms, or believe you are sick.
- Practice hand hygiene frequently: wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
- Practice routine cleaning of frequently touched surfaces with household cleaning spray or wipe: including tables, doorknobs, light switches, handles, desks, toilets, faucets, sinks, etc.
- Disinfect surfaces that may be contaminated with germs after cleaning: A list of products with EPA-approved emerging viral pathogens claims is available at epa.gov.
- Products with EPA-approved emerging viral pathogens claims are expected to be effective against the virus that causes COVID-19 based on data for harder to kill viruses. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for all cleaning and disinfection products.
- Clean and disinfect voting-associated equipment (e.g., voting machines, laptops, tablets, keyboards) routinely.
The April 4 Presidential Preference Primary and Municipal Primary election will be held on June 20. Early Voting will be conducted June 6 through June 13 (excluding Sunday, June 7).
The May 9 Municipal General election will be held on July 25. Early Voting will be conducted July 11 through July 18 (excluding Sunday, July 12).