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SPLC Action Fund: Florida Needlessly Conducts Primary Election during Pandemic without Available Federal Funds

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The following statement about tomorrow's primary elections in Florida is by Nancy Abudu, deputy legal director for the SPLC Action Fund:

"Tomorrow, Florida will needlessly conduct a statewide election during a pandemic with one of its hands tied behind its back. The federal coronavirus relief package CARES Act was signed into law in March and appropriated $20M to Florida to handle some of the difficulties COVID-19 has presented to supervisors of elections here. Despite repeated requests by supervisors of elections, Governor DeSantis and his administration have been steadfast so far in not releasing this money. With Florida recently registering its highest daily COVID-19 deaths yet, DeSantis’s decision to delay releasing funds prevents smooth election administration and unnecessarily puts the health and safety of voters, poll workers, election officials, and all of Florida at risk.
 
"Secretary Lee and Governor DeSantis must listen to election officials across all 67 counties and ensure the complete, immediate release of relief funds in time to be used for November’s general election. We also call on Secretary Lee to respond right away to questions from the House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis so that Floridians are given a transparent accounting for how the state plans to conduct this year’s general election and effectively use those CARES Act funds."