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May 2, 2023

Civil Rights Organization Urges Supervisors to Fund Nonpartisan Voter Engagement to Increase Turnout – Because “Democracy is Priceless”

Statement from the ACLU of San Diego & Imperial Counties regarding the San Diego County Board of Supervisors’ decision today to hold a special election to fill the District 4 seat to be vacated by Nathan Fletcher:

“Today, the San Diego County Board of Supervisors heard from dozens of individuals and organizations representing District 4 constituents, and rightly decided to hold a special election to fill the pending vacancy created by the resignation of Nathan Fletcher. County residents have the right to fully participate in democratic decision-making and to elect their representatives. The ACLU of San Diego & Imperial Counties (ACLU-SDIC) commends Board Chair Vargas and Supervisors Anderson, Desmond and Lawson-Remer for their unanimous decision.

“While the ACLU-SDIC supports the Board’s decision, we are mindful that special elections, with their condensed timelines, often have low voter turnout, particularly among historically disenfranchised communities and others who are disengaged from the electoral process. For more than 100 years, the nonpartisan ACLU has worked to ensure that voting rights are protected, and government agencies and elected officials are accountable to our shared values.

“We therefore call on the San Diego County Board of Supervisors to invest in the Registrar of Voters’ deployment of proven strategies and technologies that include expansive in-person voting and vote-by-mail opportunities; and to fully fund a comprehensive, nonpartisan voter education and engagement process to encourage robust participation in the August special election and the November run-off election, should it be necessary. 

“Democracy is priceless.”