SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — With at least three elections coming up this year, a lawsuit has been filed against the state of Missouri in an effort to protect voters from COVID-19.
The ACLU wants to make absentee mail-in voting available for all eligible voters in Missouri.
Mail-in voting is alloud in most states, but in Missouri, voters are required to provide an excuse, such as illness or physical disability, to be able to cast an absentee ballot.
The ACLU argues if voters have to be physically present at the polls waiting in line with others they won’t be following the advice of health experts.
The lawsuit wants to make “avoiding the contraction of the coronavirus” to be an acceptable reason for absentee voting.
The ACLU released several statements saying no one should be forced to choose between staying safe and voting this should be a common-sense solution and Missourians should not have to be exposed to a deadly virus in order to vote.
The secretary of state, Jay Ashcroft, says he’s only following the law.
“We know what we need to do to make sure the elections are safe from before the presidential preference primary, finding polling places, making sure we have poll workers, making sure we have disinfectants, we have masks for our poll workers, we can do this,” said Ashcroft. “We’re looking at how we can do drive-thru voting, and curb-side voting along with in-person, it’s going to be safe to vote.”
Ashcroft also said he doesn’t have the authority to make that change and says it will be safe to vote in Missouri.