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Voting & Elections 10.30.2020

TIME: How to Spot Disinformation Around Election Day—And What to Do About It

Since so many people are voting a new way this year, “some of this stuff doesn’t sound so crazy anymore,” says Jesse Littlewood, vice president of campaigns at the nonpartisan nonprofit Common Cause. “And we have unfortunately seen some bad actors weaponize that and say, ‘because of the coronavirus or because of social distancing, certain people need to vote after the election has concluded.’” Littlewood recommends consulting the nonpartisan National Association of Secretaries of State (NASS)’s website canivote.org for up-to-date information on your state’s rules. Littlewood cites a growing trend in mis- and disinformation calling into question the security of vote-by-mail systems. Despite false claims by President Donald Trump and others that vote-by-mail is prone to fraud, evidence shows that vote-by-mail is safe and secure, he stresses.

Voting & Elections 10.30.2020

Bloomberg: What Happens to Voting When There’s a Natural Disaster

The civic engagement group Common Cause Oregon, meanwhile, has launched a massive texting campaign in the eight most affected counties, sending out voting information and the number to their voting hotline, and trying to catch anybody who may have fallen through the cracks. Executive Director Kate Titus says they’ve reached some 300,000 people. “One of the reasons we decided to reach out by text is because we recognize that the people we reach could have a lot going on,” she says. In fact, all the experts that Bloomberg CityLab spoke to emphasize that for many displaced residents who’ve temporarily or permanently lost their homes, voting may be the last thing on their minds.

Voting & Elections 10.30.2020

NBC News: Trump asked supporters to watch the polls. How states are countering fears of intimidation.

Suzanne Almeida, the interim executive director of Common Cause Pennsylvania, said "the short answer is, we’re a little bit worried about everything." But she noted that challenged voters in Pennsylvania can get a witness to verify their identity, or vote with a provisional ballot and later prove their identity. She said she is part of a large coalition of election protection groups that will have 2,000 volunteers on the ground monitoring the polls and "roving teams" deployed to any problem areas. "We are really trying to plan for every eventuality," she said. "And hope that we need to use none of our contingency plans."

Voting & Elections 10.29.2020

ABC News: Long lines, broken machines: Why voters should not be too worried about some poll site snafus

In addition to poll workers, election offices and attorney general offices, Common Cause has a hotline, 866-OUR-VOTE (866-687-8683), with staff who have direct lines to election officials, according to Sylvia Albert, the director of voting and elections for the non-partisan watchdog group Common Cause.. "There are tons of organizations and lawyers who are out there and we have your back," she said.

Voting & Elections 10.28.2020

CBS News: (VIDEO) Poll Shows First-Time Voters Motivated To Vote In 2020

Alyssa Canty does outreach to first-time voters for the non-partisan group Common Cause. “They’re definitely activated, they definitely enjoy, like, voting early, or either voting by mail, so I think we will definitely see decent turnout, but it may not just be, like, on Election Day,” she said.

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