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Council President Scott Calls for Answers from Board of Elections Regarding June Primary Ballots

BALTIMORE, MD (May 15, 2020) --Baltimore City Council President Brandon M. Scott gave the following remarks today at an emergency press conference regarding the upcoming Primary Election on June 2, 2020:

"I'm here today to discuss a serious problem concerning the June 2nd Primary Election which, as we all know, will be conducted primarily via mail. All voters in our State were assured by the Governor and Board of Elections that they would receive a mail-in ballot well in advance of June 2, 2020. That is the day all ballots must be postmarked.

Voters across Maryland, including in Baltimore County, have received their ballots, but not here in Baltimore City.  This is a grave and serious problem, regardless of the cause.
 
In the 7th Congressional District race, 20,367 ballots were never delivered and did not reach Baltimore City voters. Many voters received their ballot on the day of the Special Primary, and some received their ballots in the days that followed.  That is disenfranchisement, plain and simple, regardless of good or bad intent.  Smooth talk to obscure this disenfranchisement, one week after the ballots were scheduled to be mailed, is unacceptable.

When people marched and died for this right, and when voting rights are under attack at the national level, it is everyone’s responsibility to take this matter with the greatest seriousness.

Over the past two months, the City Council in partnership with Councilman Kristerfer Burnett has attempted to provide oversight of this unprecedented election and get answers well in advance. Our local Board of Elections was not able to attend a hearing in person and the responses the City Council received were not adequate to allay our concerns.

With the June 2nd Primary two weeks away and growing concern among the public, I am calling on the State Board of Elections and the Baltimore City Board of Elections to give us an answer today, without excuses: Where are Baltimore City's ballots?"

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