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Virus creates unprecedented Maryland congressional election

SeattlePI.com Saturday, 25 April 2020
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — Ballots cast in person in Maryland's special congressional election between Democrat Kweisi Mfume and Republican Kimberly Klacik will be quarantined for about 24 hours after poll close before being counted — to give any potential germs a chance to die to help protect election workers.

It's one of the safety measures that's being taken in an unprecedented Maryland election on Tuesday that will only have three places for in-person voting out of concern for the coronavirus, as election officials are strongly urging eligible voters to mail in their ballots in a single race to decide who will serve the rest of the term of the late U.S. Rep. Elijah Cummings, who died in October.

In hopes of avoiding the lines seen in this month’s Wisconsin primary, roughly 484,000 ballots were mailed to registered voters in the district. More than 77,000 already have been turned in. More than half of the vote could be released on the state elections board website shortly after the 8 p.m. poll close on Tuesday.

Precautions due to the virus in this special election have thrust the candidates into unknown campaign territory in the time of a pandemic.

Fundraising has been tough. Candidates haven't been able to reach voters with traditional techniques like door-to-door campaigning or large events. Both candidates say they have been trying to reach voters more through social media.

The majority-black district that includes a large portion of Baltimore as well as parts of its suburbs in Baltimore and Howard counties is heavily Democratic, with more than four Democrats for each Republican.

Klacik, the Republican who has appeared on Fox News and caught President Donald Trump's attention with her social media posts that prompted the president to describe the district as a...
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Video credit: ABC 2 News WMAR - Published
News video: Maryland voters gear up for first election during coronavirus

Maryland voters gear up for first election during coronavirus 02:23

In one week Maryland will have its first election since the Coronavirus outbreak. Nobody wants to be in a place that has large crowds, which you might see at a polling location.

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