Kentucky Postpones Election as Coronavirus Concerns Grow

LOUISVILLE, KY - NOVEMBER 05: Residents cast votes at Dunn Elementary School November 5, 2019 in Louisville, Kentucky. Gov. Matt Bevin, a strong ally of President Donald Trump, faces a tough reelection bid against Democrat Andy Beshear, the state's attorney general. (Photo by by John Sommers II/Getty Images)
John Sommers II/Getty

Kentucky is postponing its May 19 primary election to June 23 due to growing concerns over the spread of Chinese coronavirus, Kentucky Secretary of State Michael Adams announced on Monday.

Adams said he and Gov. Andy Beshear agreed it was in the best interest of the public to reschedule the election.

“Postponing the primary was not an easy decision, but the Republican secretary of state and Democratic governor agree and so do county clerks of both parties, and they are our frontline election administrators,” Adams said in a statement.

“My hope is that this delay will allow us to have a normal election,” he continued. “Even if not, this delay will allow me, the state board of elections and our county clerks time to assess what changes we must make to ensure a successful primary election.”

He warned there could be more changes but pitched the decision as a “first step to buy us time and keep our citizens as safe as possible”:

Other states have taken similar actions, including Louisiana, Georgia, and most recently, Ohio.

The decision came at the last minute in the Buckeye State. Health Director Dr. Amy Acton signed an order to close the polls on the eve of the state’s election day:

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