Kansas Democratic Party makes voting changes

Martha Wade

Topeka, KS - Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the DNC has approved the following changes to the Kansas Democratic Party’s 2020 Primary Election schedule to ensure a safe and fair electoral process. To best protect the safety of all Kansas Democrats during this uncertain time, the 2020 Primary will be conducted completely by mail, there will be NO IN-PERSON VOTING on May 2, 2020.

Over ten percent of the polling locations originally secured as in-person sites have independently cancelled their contract with the KDP due to safety concerns about in-person voting and the novel coronavirus. The KDP recognizes that this is a significant change to the electoral process but remains confident that the mail-in ballot process will ensure all Kansas Democrats have the ability to make their voices heard during this important election. We will continue working with our county and local affiliates along with the press to reach voters across Kansas and inform them of new dates and deadlines.

To adapt to these changes, the KDP has introduced a supplemental mailing for primary ballots, extended the deadline to request a mail-in ballot and introduced a “received by” deadline for ballots. The KDP is continuing to advise those interested in participating in the 2020 General Election to register as a Democrat as soon as possible through www.ksvotes.org

The complete vote-by-mail schedule as of March 27, 2020 is as follows:

On March 30, 2020, all registered Democrats in Kansas will automatically be mailed an official 2020 Democratic Presidential Primary ballot, along with a secrecy sleeve and return envelope to enclose and return their ballot. Ballots are pre-paid and do not require a stamp.

On April 7, 2020, the Kansas Democratic Party will send a supplemental ballot mailing to recently-registered Democrats who were not included in the March 30th mailing. Ballots are pre-paid and do not require a stamp.

If you are a registered Democrat and have not received your ballot by April 10, 2020,** you can request another mail-in ballot until April 24, 2020 by calling the KDP office or filling out an online form at: https://kansasdems.org/request-mail-ballot.

**Note: The mail-in ballot request form will not be available online until April 10, 2020 to ensure adequate time for ballots to be delivered by mail.

Voters should follow the instructions included with their ballots and mail their ballot so that it is received by May 2, 2020.

The KDP will begin processing ballots as they are received at our headquarters. The KDP will plan on releasing results as soon as they are available through our website, social media channels and to the press.

In response to these preventative measures, Vicki Hiatt, Chair of the Kansas Democratic Party released the following statement:

“Removing our in-person voting locations for the 2020 Primary was an extremely difficult decision to make but the unprecedented gravity of COVID-19 has required significant changes to our operations to ensure the safety of all Kansans during this electoral process. The KDP maintains its commitment to a fair and transparent election and I want to assure all concerned Kansans that we are doing everything possible to make sure their voices are heard in the 2020 Primary. Kansas was already well-positioned for this pandemic due to our vote-by-mail component and we are confident that the changes we have made to our schedule will expand the accessibility of this process for all voters who would like to participate in the 2020 Primary election.”

Please note: the KDP is only directing the 2020 Democratic Presidential Primary. We cannot comment on the operations of any other elections but will work closely with the Kansas Secretary of State’s office as needed to educate our members about the voting procedures for following elections.

* Martha Wade, Pratt