BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD)– The pressure is on for Louisiana lawmakers to come to an agreement on how they will handle the November election amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
“The biggest frustration I have is partisan politics getting in the way of us being able to administer elections,” Secretary of State Kyle Ardoin said.
Ardoin’s proposed plan for the November election would significantly limit the number of absentee mail-in ballots.
The plan would require poll workers to wear masks, sanitize voting machines and practice social distancing.
Absentee ballots are limited to registered voters who test positive for Covid-19 and those who are 65 and older.
To pass his plan, Ardoin would have to get approval from Governor Edwards and republican lawmakers.
People in quarantine after being exposed to Covid-19 are in the group of those who would have to vote in person under Ardoin’s plan.
Ardoin says voters with concerns over Covid-19 can apply to register as “disabled” through the Attorney General’s Office.
Edwards plans to block the proposal tweeting Wednesday in part, “The secretary of state is just 100 percent wrong” and “The people of Louisiana should not have to risk their lives to vote.”
“The Governor’s got his opinion, and I’ve got mine. I provided a plan that I am required to do by law, I did so, he doesn’t like it, We’ll see what the legislature says and we are going to court next week so a judge will probably determine it anyway,” Ardoin said.
Ardoin says they must reach a compromise soon.
“I can’t turn an election process on a dime, its like turning an aircraft carrier, its not a quick and easy thing to do,” Ardoin said.
Ardoin announced on Thursday Major General Glenn H. Curtis would aid the Secretary of State to move forward with the Presidential Election plan.
A federal judge will likely determine how much power the secretary of state will have over the unresolved election plan.
Ardoin released the following statement on Wednesday regarding the plan: