PACS news / April 10, 2020

Stanford and MIT Launch Joint Initiative to Support Healthy Elections

Stanford and MIT launched the “Stanford-MIT Project on a Healthy Election,” a joint initiative to address the unprecedented and ongoing threat that the COVID-19 pandemic poses to the 2020 Election. The project will be co-led by Nathaniel Persily, the James B. McClatchy Professor of Law at Stanford, Co-Director of the Program on Democracy and the Internet at Stanford PACS and former Senior Research Director of the Presidential Commission on Election Administration, and Professor Charles Stewart III, Kenan Sahin Distinguished Professor of Political Science at MIT, Director of the MIT Election Data and Science Lab and Co-Director of the Caltech/MIT Voting Technology Project.

The project aims to bring academics and election administration experts together to assess and promote best practices to ensure the 2020 election can proceed with integrity, safety, and equal access despite the pandemic. “The nation’s election administrators know what steps are necessary to ensure a successful election in November,” said Nathaniel Persily. “They simply need the resources and the assistance to make the transition to mail balloting and safe polling-place voting.”

Persily and Stewart recently issued “Ten Recommendations to Ensure a Healthy and Trustworthy 2020 Election,” where they insist that this situation should be addressed as an emergency. Persily and the former Republican and Democratic co-chairs of the Presidential Commission on Election Administration also wrote in the New York Times of the need for Congress to appropriate the necessary funds to the states to make safe and inclusive voting possible in November.

For more information, please visit the Healthy Elections Website.