I hope this finds you and your families safe and healthy. With the unprecedented times we are experiencing, the 2020 elections will undoubtedly bring many unprecedented challenges. I would like to address a few of these challenges in this note.
Together we have worked hard over the last few years with great success. Now we face an election like none other. I truly believe we are embarking on the most important election of our lifetimes.
On Wednesday evening, CCDC’s Executive Committee met for the first time by teleconference. There were about 70 participants on the line. Meeting by teleconference was reflective of one of the significant challenges we face right now. COVID-19 is causing us to practice social, or perhaps more specifically, physical distancing. At this time, face-to-face meetings as well as typical campaign methods like door knocking and literature drops are no longer acceptable. We need to be prepared to use other methods to reach voters. Social media, phone calls, emails, texts and robocalls will all be, for the foreseeable future, the campaign tools of choice.
COVID-19 has also caused the 2020 election calendar to change. Today, Governor Wolf signed a bill to postpone our primary from April 28 to June 2. The bill also triggers other significant changes aimed at assuring safe, efficient and secure voting amid COVID-19:
• The deadline for new Voter Registration is now May 18
• The deadline for requesting a Vote By Mail ballot is now May 26
• The distinction between mail-in and absentee ballots is removed
ª Mail ballot processing by County election officials will now begin as soon as polls open at 7:00 am (previously not allowed until polls closed)
It is up to us to ensure every Democrat in Chester County knows the new June 2 date for the Primary AND is aware of the Vote By Mail option, including how to sign-up. Please use any and every tool you have (social media, email, phone banks, robocalls) to get the word out in your precincts. The list of available campaign tools may have narrowed but our role remains the same – making sure every Democratic voter votes on June 2 and again on November 3. We have proven our ability to elect Democrats in Chester County. The road ahead may be challenging but the rewards (a new President and stronger Democratic presence in Harrisburg) promise to make 2020 a year that is unsurpassed by any other.
Stay safe. Stay distanced. Stay healthy.
Thank you and my best wishes to you and your families,
Chair, Chester County Democratic Committee