SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – Georgia’s primary election has been postponed for a second time, now set for Tuesday, June 9.
In a statement sent out Thursday morning, Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger said it was the right thing to do after Governor Brian Kemp extended the state’s emergency orders.
Raffensperger said postponing the election until June will give his office, and county voting offices, time to assure that primary voting is safe and secure.
However, voting groups say it makes things more difficult.
Step Up Savannah’s mission has been working to “get out the vote” since 2017, after realizing that only 61 percent of eligible voters cast a ballot in the 2016 election.
According to Step Up Savannah Interim Executive Director Alicia Johnson, people with a lower income that traditionally vote at a 30% lower rate already face obstacles like needing a state ID, or even getting to the polls.
“It’s very important for those of us who are familiar with the process to make sure that we’re at the table advocating,” she said.
Raffensperger says pushing back the primary election any further could potentially have negative consequences on preparation for the November 3, 2020 General Election.
The voter registration deadline for the June 9, 2020 election will be May 11. Early voting will begin on May 18. With the primary election moved to June 9 the extension will also move the primary runoff to August 11. Raffensperger says the extension includes almost every day of in-person voting for an election on May 19.
The secretary of state’s office says if you’ve already voted early, your vote still counts and you don’t need to vote again in the primary.