Kentucky lawmaker Gerald Neal had a big decision to make as the legislature gathered at the Capitol for some important votes amid the coronavirus outbreak. His dilemma wasn’t simply whether to vote “yes” or “no,” but whether to even enter the state Senate. At age 74 with diabetes and high-blood pressure, Neal was at high risk of developing life-threatening problems were he to contact the virus that causes the COVID-19 disease. Yet the Kentucky Senate — like most legislative chambers across the country — doesn’t allow remote voting. “It’s a challenging piece, because you want to carry out your responsibility. People elect you to do that,” said Neal, a Democrat from Louisville. “But at the same time, it defies logic to put yourself in a position that is injurious to your health.” Since the coronavirus outbreak led to widespread stay-at-home orders last month, 13 states have adopted some means of remote voting in at least one of their legislative chambers, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. Those include seven Republican-led legislatures, five Democratic-led ones and the politically split Minnesota Legislature Some legislatures have stopped meeting entirely. But others are pressing ahead with in-person sessions, leaving lawmakers to choose


Continue To Full Article