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Politics Podcast: How To Hold An Election During A Crisis


The COVID-19 pandemic has turned election administration upside down. Sixteen presidential primary contests have been postponed, and Wisconsin, which held its election as planned, saw large-scale polling place closures and unfulfilled requests for mail ballots.

In this installment of the FiveThirtyEight Politics podcast, we look at voting during times of crisis from two perspectives. First, FiveThirtyEight’s Geoffrey Skelley describes how the country has gone about holding elections during historical crises like the Civil War and Spanish Flu. Then, Wendy Weiser of the Brennan Center for Justice discusses a plan she’s proposing to help ensure this fall’s election runs smoothly.

FiveThirtyEight Politics Podcast: US has held elections during times of crisis before

You can listen to the episode by clicking the “play” button in the audio player above or by downloading it in iTunes, the ESPN App or your favorite podcast platform. If you are new to podcasts, learn how to listen.

The FiveThirtyEight Politics podcast publishes Mondays and Thursdays. Help new listeners discover the show by leaving us a rating and review on iTunes. Have a comment, question or suggestion for “good polling vs. bad polling”? Get in touch by email, on Twitter or in the comments.

Galen Druke is FiveThirtyEight’s podcast producer and reporter.