On Monday, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott extended the early voting period for November elections by nearly a week in an attempt to combat the obstacles presented by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Originally set to begin Oct. 19, registered voters will now be able to make their way to the polls beginning Oct. 13. The Oct. 30 end date for early voting remains unchanged. Election Day is scheduled for Nov. 3.
“As we respond to COVID-19, the state of Texas is focused on strategies that preserve Texans’ ability to vote in a way that also mitigates the spread of the virus,” Abbott said in a statement.
Interim Harris County Clerk Chris Hollins said the county is expecting a record turnout in November and applauded Abbott’s move. Hollins said he had previously asked Abbott to extend the early voting period.
“The safest way to vote is to vote by mail, but the next safest method to vote is to vote to avoid long lines at vote centers on Election Day,” he said in a statement. “This extension gives voters more options to vote early.”