Moving the Date a Good Solution: Rice Resists All-VBM Primary Election

Black and Latino legislators, civil rights organizers and faith leaders will demonstrate their solidarity in a unified call to action behind state veteran Senator Ronald L. Rice to prioritize passage of a package of bills that address marijuana decriminalization and expungement, as well as the juvenile justice system.

After conferring with civil rights and African American leaders, state Senator Ronald Rice (D-28) reconfirmed his position that New Jersey should not have an all vote-by-mail primary, and said he would applaud a decision by Governor Phil Murphy to merely move the election.

“If we can go to a liquor store and stand in line, we can go to polling place and stand in line,” said Rice, who throughout this COVID-19 crisis has emphasized the importance of enabling voters to actually go to the polls, despite fears of packing people in close proximity and intensifying the deadly virus.

“It’s probably the right thing to do,” the veteran Newark senator said of an anticipated announcement this week by Murphy to postpone the June 2nd Primary.

Rice said he hopes the governor’s decision places New Jersey’s contest sufficiently outside the range of COVID-19 to not warrant all vote-by-mail elections.

“The legislative black caucus, people of color, and civil rights organizers agree that we don’t need to have a vote-by-mail election only,” said Rice. “If we do that, a lot of people won’t vote. We can’t get them into an aggregate to really explain it.”

The senator sees elections in which voters can actually go to polling places as essential to democracy.

“We don’t want to get away from what we struggled and fought for,” said the Vietnam combat veteran. “We know we can make polling places safe. This is not only precious but very valuable to the process, as people have te chance to hand out things relevant to elections and post things. Once we get used to mailing it in, we’re going to compound ballot corruption in this country and this state.”

If indeed the governor intends to delay the election but not commit to an all-VBM election, “I commend him,” said Rice.

But the senator said he would not favor moving the date to July.

It would be too far from the originally scheduled date.

Late June ought to do, Rice said.


(Visited 14 times, 1 visits today)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

News From Around the Web

The Political Landscape