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Majority favors November mail-in ballots if coronavirus not contained: poll

Majority favors November mail-in ballots if coronavirus not contained: poll
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A majority of Americans polled said they think the government should allow mail-in ballots in the presidential election if the coronavirus pandemic has not abated by November, according to the results of a Reuters-Ipsos poll published Wednesday.

The viewpoint had bipartisan support as 72 percent of respondents, including 79 percent that identified as Democrats and 65 percent that identified as Republicans, said they would support such a move if necessary to protect voters from the risk of the virus.

The same survey found that 89 percent of adults nationwide said they were concerned about the virus and 36 percent believe they will personally be infected over the course of the year.

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The poll also found a decline in approval of President TrumpDonald TrumpHead of firms that pushed 'Italygate' theory falsely claimed VA mansion was her home: report Centrists gain foothold in infrastructure talks; cyber attacks at center of Biden-Putin meeting VA moving to cover gender affirmation surgery through department health care MORE’s handling of the pandemic, with 42 percent approving of the president's measures, down 6 points from last week.

The poll was conducted among 1,116 adults online Monday and Tuesday, with 532 identifying as Democrats and 417 as Republicans. It has a credibility interval of plus or minus 3 to 6 percentage points.

Trump has called mail-in voting “a terrible thing” despite mailing in his own ballot in March’s Florida primary, claiming the distinction is that his ballot was mailed in from out of state and suggesting without evidence that a mail-in option allows for "thousands of people sitting in somebody’s living room signing ballots."

Colorado, Hawaii, Oregon, Utah and Washington already give voters the option to mail in ballots.

Numerous voting rights advocates called for Wisconsin to allow the option as Gov. Tony Evers (D) had called for the state’s primary on Tuesday to be postponed to stem the spread of the virus. Evers’s executive order delaying the state’s primary was overturned by the state Supreme Court.

House Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiGOP increasingly balks at calling Jan. 6 an insurrection Overnight Energy: Lake Mead's decline points to scary water future in West | White House leads opposition to raising gas tax | Biden taps ex-New Mexico lawmaker for USDA post Trump against boycotting Beijing Olympics in 2022 MORE (D-Calif.) has asked Congress to allocate up to $4 billion to help states improve their capacity for mail-in voting, while former Vice President Joe BidenJoe Biden 64 percent of Iowans say 'time for someone else' to hold Grassley's Senate seat: poll Philadelphia shooting leaves 2 dead, injures toddler Ron Johnson booed at Juneteenth celebration in Wisconsin MORE has said election staff should consider allowing the option “across the board” in the November general election.