Politics with Amy Walter: What a Surge in Absentee Ballots Means for November 2020

June 26, 2020

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The uncertainty caused by COVID-19 has resulted in a record number of people requesting to vote-by-mail. While increased access to mail ballots will stem the spread of the disease, waiting for ballots to arrive will delay the final result.

Kentucky and New York are among the states that hosted primaries this week. In both states, several candidates of color, many who ran on progressive platforms, had strong performances. While officials wait for absentee ballots to arrive so they can provide a final tally, the delayed outcome has raised questions about future elections. Amy Gardner, National Political Reporter at The Washington Post and Astead Herndon, National Political Reporter at The New York Times, share how Tuesday's elections bode for November.

The general election will likely come down to a handful of swing states. In Pennsylvania, where a primary was held on June 2, the process of counting votes lasted until days after. Montgomery County Commissioner Ken Lawrence weighs in on the looming pressure regarding the upcoming presidential contest.

Plus, Democratic Congressman Conor Lamb flipped his seat from red to blue in a special election in 2018. A pro-second amendment, pro-fracking moderate, Lamb was cautious to weigh in on President Trump in a district he'd won in 2016. Congressman Lamb describes how his campaign has shifted its messaging for 2020.

The ongoing protests against police brutality have prompted a national reexamination about the role of the police. In Philadelphia, Larry Krasner was elected as District Attorney in 2017. He ran as a reform candidate and promised to reduce the number of people in jail by overhauling the sentencing process and the bail system, in addition to holding officers accountable for misconduct. He weighs in on the culture of policing and police unions as we move towards a national tipping point.

As protesters continue to demand justice for George Floyd and accountability for police brutality, public symbols of white supremacy have become a target. Confederate statues have long held the ire of those who’ve said they elevate those who fought (and lost) to keep slavery alive. As the demands to remove public reverence to confederate generals become more widespread, historians are requesting that schools modify textbooks that romanticize what confederates were fighting for. James W. Loewen, historian, sociologist, and author of "Lies My Teacher Told Me," and Keisha N. BlainAssociate Professor of History at the University of Pittsburgh, join Politics to discuss.

Check out our ongoing coverage of the COVID-19 pandemic here

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