March 17, 2020

KDP Issues Emergency Measures to Protect Against Coronavirus

Topeka, KS – Last night, the Kansas Democratic Party’s Executive Committee conducted a phone conference to discuss a slate of emergency measures designed to combat the spread of COVID-19. As of March 17, 2020, the KDP will:

  • Shift all campaign organizing efforts, including direct voter contact, from in-person work to virtual work, and we are encouraging our campaigns in Kansas to do the same.
  • Recommend any event or gathering over 10 attendees be canceled, but we leave this decision to the discretion of the host and/or campaign.
  • Close KDP Headquarters to the public, and KDP employees will begin working from home from March 18, 2020 until at least April 1, 2020. Only credentialed personnel, party leaders, and elected officials will be permitted to access the office from March 17th – May 1st.

Furthermore, the Kansas Democratic Party has instituted internal procedures such as:

  • Forming an internal task force to regularly meet to stay on top of CDC and KDHE updates to ensure appropriate plans are put in place for each upcoming gathering. We will continue to monitor and provide updates as needed. For guidance on local meetings, we encourage you to check with your local health official for advisory.
  • Limiting all non-essential staff travel and prohibiting staff travel out of state until May 1st.
  • Providing regular updates and guidance to county parties, candidates, and committee members.

As of March 17, 2020, we do not have an update on any changes concerning the 2020 Presidential Primary. The existing vote-by-mail component allows voters to cast ballots from the comfort of their own homes. We are advising those interested in participating in the 2020 Primary to register as a Democrat ASAP through www.ksvotes.org to make sure they are sent a ballot on March 30th, and we are continuing to encourage voters to take advantage of the vote-by-mail option for the 2020 Primary.

The vote-by-mail schedule as of March 17, 2020 is as follows:

  • On March 30, 2020, all registered Democrats in Kansas will automatically be mailed an official 2020 Democratic Presidential Primary ballot, along with a secrecy sleeve and return envelope to enclose and return their ballot.
  • If you are a registered Democrat and have not received your ballot by April 3, 2020, you can request a mail-in ballot be sent to your address until April 17, 2020 by calling the KDP office or filling out an online form on our website.
    • *Please Note: The mail-in ballot request form will not be available online until April 3, 2020 to ensure adequate time for ballots to be delivered by mail.  
  • Voters should follow the instructions included with the ballot to postmark their ballot by Friday, April 24, 2020, or drop their ballot and return envelope off in person to their voting site on Election Day, Saturday, May 2, 2020 from 10 AM to 4 PM.**
    • **Please Note: We are encouraging voters to seal their ballot return envelope with water instead of saliva.

In response to these preventative measures, Vicki Hiatt, Chair of the Kansas Democratic Party, released the following statement:

“The Kansas Democratic Party is committed to doing everything we can to halt the spread of COVID-19 and protect the health and well-being of all Kansans. The KDP’s Executive Committee supports the Party’s aim to conduct essential party business while lowering the risk of coronavirus transmission in our operations. Making significant changes to our schedule is never an easy decision; however, the KDP is committed to doing our part to keep our party members, candidates, elected officials, and the public at large safe during this uncertain time.”

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The Kansas Democratic Party’s priority moving forward is to ensure the health, safety and security of all Kansans. As we make decisions about future KDP programming, we will act with complete transparency and will update our members as quickly as possible through our website (www.kansasdems.org), social media channels (@KansasDems on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram) and to the press as necessary. For more information on the 2020 Presidential Primary and the vote-by-mail process, please visit our website at www.kansasdems.org/2020Primary.

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