Illinois Governor has signed SB 1863 and HB 2238 into the law that will provide vote by mail (VBM) applications to all recent voters in Illinois. The legislation is signed into the law to ensure safe and active participation in the 2020 general election during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The early voting hours expansion at permanent polling places, signature verification process improvement, and making election day a state holiday is also enabled through the legislation.
Pritzker says that ensuring transparency and active involvement in the voting process is crucial. He said, In the face of a pandemic, massive economic upheaval, and renewed calls for racial justice, it’s more important than ever that Illinoisans can hold accountable a truly representative and transparent government – and that means ensuring all eligible residents can wield their right to vote in a way that doesn’t risk their personal health.”
He added, “Sending vote by mail applications to residents who have participated in recent elections will allow more people to exercise that right from the safety of their own homes and help reduce the spread of COVID-19 in our communities. I applaud Leader Kelly Burke, Senator Julie Morrison, the House Democratic Women’s Caucus and leaders in the General Assembly for working to ensure Illinoisans can continue to exercise their right to vote in the upcoming general election.”
Vote by mail is the safest method to cast a ballot in November as it is anticipated that social distancing would be needed to help reduce the spread of COVID-19. The voters that cast ballot in the 2018 general election, the 2019 consolidated election, or the 2020 general primary election will have to receive mail or email vote by mail ballot applications and the VBM timeline by the local election offices.