Election Day is 53 days away and the DC Board of Elections expects “record-shattering turnout.” The stakes of the election are obvious and even attracting new voters, including 27-year-old Washington Wizards shooting guard Bradley Beal, who has never cast a ballot before.
The hope is the general election runs a lot smoother than the June 2 primary. At a roundtable on Thursday, the Council debriefed the primary, an election riddled with problems that led to some residents waiting in ridiculously long lines until 1 a.m. Officials with the DC Board of Elections say the independent agency is sending absentee ballots to every registered voter in the District to avoid problems of the past, as well as investing more in mail-in and early voting advertisements.
According to Ward 6 Councilmember Charles Allen, one of the biggest changes in the general election scheduled on Nov. 3 is that all registered voters in D.C. will be mailed a ballot without having to request one. “I think this will eliminate the confusion that arose in the primary about whether requests for ballots have been received and processed,” he said. (Election officials need to receive voter registration applications by Oct. 13; here is how to register.)
Voters should expect to receive a mail-in ballot by the end of the first week of October. Residents will also have the option to drop off their ballots at any one of the 55 secure drop boxes around the city beginning Oct. 5. Drop boxes will be located at most public facilities like libraries.
The most important thing you need to know is if you do not receive your mail-in ballot by Oct. 21, you should plan to vote in person. “This is because we do realize that the mail may not reach every voter,” said DC Board of Elections executive director Alice Miller during the roundtable.
Early vote centers will open Oct. 27 through Nov. 2. Even though more than 90 vote centers will be open on Election Day—including “super vote centers” like Capital One Arena and Nationals Park—officials are encouraging residents to take advantage of mail-in and early voting. Social distancing requirements at the polls will inevitably lead to longer lines on Nov. 3.
—Amanda Michelle Gomez (tips? email@example.com)
CITY DESK LINKS, by Amanda Michelle Gomez (tips? firstname.lastname@example.org)
- As of Sept. 10, D.C. reported zero deaths related to COVID-19 but 81 new positive cases. The total number of infections in the city is now 14,493. [EOM]
- Severe flooding leads to multiple rescue missions around the D.C. region. The Office of Unified Communications says there were 74 calls for flooding yesterday. Calls ranged; people called about water coming into their homes and being trapped in their vehicles. [WTOP, Twitter]
- D.C., Maryland, and Virginia sue the Trump Administration over its failure to keep the Chesapeake Bay clean. [DCist]
LOOSE LIPS LINKS, by Mitch Ryals (tips? email@example.com)
- The D.C. Council is back from recess. Here are some issues to track. [DCist]
- Metro board member suggests shutting down rail service after a scathing report on a “toxic workplace.” [Post]
- Padro, Goodwin, Lazere, and Orange bubble to the top of a crowded at-large field, Jonetta Rose Barras writes. [DC Line]
- The Virginia Senate passes a police reform bill that does not include an end to qualified immunity for cops. [DCist]
- Ward 5 Councilmember Kenyan McDuffie is on the Politics Hour today. [Kojo]
YOUNG & HUNGRY LINKS, by Laura Hayes (tips? firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Restaurant workers are learning how to deescalate potentially dangerous situations with angry customers with a Zoom series from locally based sister organizations Safe Bars and Defend Yourself. [WCP]
- Prescription Chicken and TaKorean team up on a virtual food hall in Shaw. [WCP]
- Capitol Lounge sets a permanent closure date of Sept. 20. [Washingtonian]
- A well known sushi chef is opening a Japanese food hall in D.C. [WBJ]
- Why spice blends are so special. [Eater]
ARTS LINKS, by Kayla Randall (tips? email@example.com)
- Arts links will return next week.
SPORTS LINKS, by Kelyn Soong (tips? firstname.lastname@example.org)
- A new coach and a new name: Ron Rivera and the Washington Football Team make their debut on Sunday against the Eagles at 1 p.m. in a Week 1 matchup. [Hogs Haven]
- After returning from the injured list just over a week ago, Sean Doolittle suffered what Dave Martinez called a “right oblique” injury and could be done for the season. [Federal Baseball]
- Myisha Hines-Allen scored 30 points for the Mystics in their 80-72 win over the Los Angeles Sparks to keep their playoff hopes alive. [NBC Sports Washington]
- The National Portrait Gallery’s 2015 exhibition tracking Dolores Huerta’s life and accomplishments is available virtually. [WCP]