Kelvin Barrios, a candidate for the San Diego City Council District 9 seat, sent a letter Friday to Mayor Kevin Faulconer and other elected officials urging consideration of allocating funds for a vote-by-mail election because of the coronavirus outbreak.
Barrios, who is running against Sean Elo in the Nov. 3 election, was hospitalized with symptoms of the coronavirus March 19 and tested positive for it on March 21.
Barrios has since fully recovered, but urged city officials to prepare for lengthy public health orders.
“We don’t know how long this pandemic will continue to impact San Diegans, but in the interest of public safety, our city should be proactive to ensure a safe and inclusive democratic process as we approach the general election this November,” Barrios said.
“This public health crisis impacted my personal well-being and I would not want anyone else to go through what I went through.”
There are more than 785,000 voters in San Diego. Most have the option to vote by mail, but according to Barrios, 210,000 are poll voters.
“With concerns over long lines, crowded rooms, and shared touch screens in some voting places coupled with the uncertainty of when this public health crisis will end, the Barrios campaign urges city officials to take the steps necessary so San Diegans don’t have to risk their health to exercise their constitutional right to vote,” a campaign statement said.