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Federal judge rules that several voting changes must be made before the election

The changes apply to absentee voting, and were made to keep people at high risk for Coronavirus from being exposed, but there's some disagreement about how these changes could impact election results.

Posted: Sep 30, 2020 9:16 PM
Updated: Sep 30, 2020 11:21 PM

We are hearing from voters in North Alabama after a federal judge in Birmingham ruled that, because of Coronavirus, several voting regulations in Alabama must be changed before the November 3 general election. Some of the changes are being controversial.

Attorney General Steve Marshall announced today that the state will appeal the ruling. He sent WAAY 31 a statement saying, "Voting began weeks ago. And every Alabama voter is entitled to vote under the same laws, not new ones written by a federal court in the middle of voting.”

The amendment will be on the November 6th ballot.

The changes apply to absentee voting, and were made to keep people at high risk for Coronavirus from being exposed, but there's some disagreement about how these changes could impact election results.

"You don't have a say if you don't get out and vote," said voter, Daniel Cody.

Voting will look very different this presidential election.

The first change is absentee ballots from voters susceptible to Coronavirus do not have to be witnessed or signed by a notary or two adult witnesses.

"I am against that. I think that someone should have to sign that to show that they are who they say they are," said voter, Joann Huggins.

"I do think it would be a good thing for people who are trying to avoid being out," said Cody.

The second change is voters older than 65 or with underlying medical conditions do not have to provide a copy of their photo I.D. with their absentee ballot application, a change many people say I spoke to tonight say is not a good idea.

"I don't understand the reason for not providing their I.D. I don't see how it will provide any ease," said voter, Sheila Dyas.

"We are trying to make sure everybody is accounted for so removing that accountability seems like a step backwards," said Cody.

Joann and Jeff Huggins are poll workers in Madison County. They say after hearing these changes, they believe election results could be skewed.

"It could be that individuals could sign something and it not really be their vote," said Huggins.

There is one change that voters seem to approve of: curbside voting being allowed in any county.

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"It seems like a good easy alternative for people who are trying to stay distanced a little more," said Cody.

"If you have someone who works for the courthouse or the state of Alabama to go out and go to the car to get the ballot, then I don't have a problem with that," said Huggins.

Everyone WAAY 31 talked to on Wednesday said while they are still unsure about the changes, voting this year is more important than ever despite the pandemic. Absentee voting has already started, or you can vote in person on November 3.

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Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 498887

Reported Deaths: 10122
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson719121402
Mobile36328740
Madison32639469
Tuscaloosa24372421
Montgomery22765520
Shelby22231218
Baldwin19890289
Lee15057158
Calhoun13901294
Morgan13770255
Etowah13407325
Marshall11452213
Houston10130264
Elmore9499190
Limestone9429138
St. Clair9041227
Cullman8991183
Lauderdale8618214
DeKalb8507175
Talladega7628165
Walker6593259
Jackson6551104
Autauga633392
Blount6246128
Colbert6004121
Coffee5268104
Dale4676107
Russell407333
Franklin400078
Covington3998106
Chilton3902103
Escambia379273
Tallapoosa3631143
Clarke344553
Chambers3432111
Dallas3422142
Pike293273
Marion288595
Lawrence285386
Winston258568
Bibb245758
Marengo243057
Geneva240570
Pickens225557
Barbour213951
Hale212269
Fayette202257
Butler201766
Henry183641
Cherokee178140
Monroe166739
Randolph165140
Washington156836
Macon147745
Crenshaw146555
Clay146054
Cleburne139941
Lamar133933
Lowndes132851
Wilcox122825
Bullock117436
Conecuh107024
Perry106227
Sumter100432
Coosa90224
Greene88732
Choctaw55423
Out of AL00
Unassigned00

Tennessee Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 780894

Reported Deaths: 11534
CountyCasesDeaths
Shelby877551513
Davidson81978873
Knox46346589
Hamilton40635463
Rutherford38663387
Williamson25433204
Sumner21498320
Montgomery17505213
Out of TN1711195
Wilson16553211
Unassigned15813126
Sullivan14489275
Blount14167184
Bradley13039141
Washington12834234
Maury12262162
Sevier12127165
Putnam10647170
Madison10130231
Robertson9016121
Hamblen8086165
Anderson8075158
Greene7317145
Tipton6972103
Coffee6423115
Dickson6274106
Gibson6197141
Cumberland6130123
Carter5996155
McMinn596293
Roane593896
Bedford5826120
Loudon573567
Jefferson5700119
Lawrence557883
Monroe536990
Warren532877
Hawkins527898
Dyer5243101
Franklin475485
Fayette468673
Obion437095
Lincoln415962
Rhea415373
Cocke402596
Cheatham396344
Marshall392257
Campbell382859
Weakley379660
Giles375597
Henderson362374
Carroll349281
White339766
Hardeman339165
Macon337473
Hardin331963
Lauderdale309742
Henry301475
Marion295245
Scott288344
Wayne288230
Overton286258
Claiborne283769
McNairy268653
Hickman267141
DeKalb266951
Haywood264960
Smith257736
Grainger244946
Trousdale239822
Morgan230838
Fentress229644
Johnson217338
Chester202448
Bledsoe201210
Crockett197647
Unicoi181647
Polk178722
Cannon178030
Union173334
Grundy170130
Lake167926
Sequatchie157227
Humphreys155221
Decatur154137
Benton151139
Lewis147525
Meigs126923
Jackson125734
Stewart124125
Clay107131
Houston103732
Perry103628
Moore94616
Van Buren79720
Pickett74623
Hancock49712

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