Using sharply critical language, Prince George’s County Executive Angela Alsobrooks issued a statement Wednesday saying Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan has “failed” to make “health and safety a priority” for the election in November.
Hogan wants all polling places across the state to be open and wants every registered voter to be mailed an application for a ballot.
Alsobrooks called the plan “overcomplicated.”
“The governor’s proposal puts politics above the health and safety of Prince Georgians,” said Alsobrooks in her statement.
WTOP has reached out to the governor’s office for comment but has not heard back.
No jurisdiction in Maryland has been hit harder in the coronavirus pandemic than Prince George’s County.
The county has had more than 23,000 cases, according to state health officials. The county with the second-most cases in the state has been Montgomery County with about 18,000 cases.
Montgomery and Prince George’s counties have the highest number of deaths as well with 794 and 746, respectively.
Alsobrooks said she thought it was a safer idea for all voters to receive ballots in the mail, as they did ahead of the June primary election.
“The truth is, in this year’s primary, which used mail-in ballots, Prince George’s experienced the highest voter participation that we’ve had in 12 years,” said Alsobrooks.
“We are pleased that so many voters chose to participate without risking their health. For the voters who chose to vote in person, we proposed and continue to support a plan that allows 15 locations, more than triple the number that were provided under the State’s June 2 plan, for in person voting.”
Hogan called that election an “unmitigated disaster” because thousands of ballots went to the wrong address, were received late or not at all.
Linda Lamone, administrator for the state’s elections board, said this week that ballot applications would start being mailed out Aug. 24.
In addition to finalizing the applications, Lamone said the board was looking for a data center to help with the processing of completed application forms.
“We need another resource to help with this effort, or voters will not receive their mail-in ballots in time to vote and return them,” Lamone said.