Bring the Masks and Sanitizer: The Surprising Bipartisan Consensus About Safety Measures For In-Person Voting During the Coronavirus Pandemic

Joshua A. Douglas, Michael A. Zilis

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Abstract

Requiring masks at the polls might implicate a clash between two vital rights: the constitutional right to vote and the right to protect one’s health. Yet the debate during the 2020 election over requirements to wear a mask at the polls obscured one key fact: a majority of Americans supported a mask mandate for voting. That is the new insight we provide in this Essay: when surveyed, Americans strongly supported safety measures for in-person voting, and that support was high regardless of partisanship. One implication of our results is that by making some widely supported safety modifications, state election officials likely can increase, in a non-polarizing fashion, voters’ feelings of safety when going to their polling place, especially during a global health emergency.

Original languageUndefined/Unknown
JournalLaw Faculty Scholarly Articles
StatePublished - Jan 1 2021
Externally publishedYes

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