Daily VideoOctober 16, 2020
News Roundup: Early voters break records while COVID numbers rebound
Directions: Read the summary, watch the video and answer the discussion questions. Have students record what they found most significant in the summaries and ask them what they’d like to learn more about. For a transcript of the video, click here.
Summary of the top news: Early voting began or continued in many states. Some early voter records have already been shattered, and voters report worry about intimidation at polls and long lines, but continue to come out to the polls in high numbers. While voters began voting in person, battles continued to be fought in court over state voting rules, including registration deadlines and ballot dropbox access. In California, the government has ordered the Republican Party to take down ballot collection boxes the party set up to look like official ballot dropboxes.
Also in the news:
- The Senate Judiciary Committee held hearings this week on the nomination of judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court. Barrett is president Trump’s nominee to replace Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who passed away in September.
- Daily reported cases of COVID-19 have begun to rise again in the US and have risen dramatically in Europe as well. Some politicians and others have suggested that “herd immunity,” or simply allowing the majority of the population become infected to develop a natural immune response, is the best strategy to deal with rising COVID-19 numbers. Many experts have explained why that’s not a good idea. Meanwhile, a study has shown that government response in developed countries does have an impact on the spread of the virus.
- President Trump recovered from his own COVID-19 infection and began immediately campaigning again, including holding large, in-person rallies in battleground states. Meanwhile, Joe Biden continued to hold more modest events while raising record cash to spend on advertising, aiming to cut into President Trump’s flailing support with key demographics such as suburban voters.
Warm up questions:
- Who is breaking voting records this year?
- What are some of the ways voting is different this presidential cycle?
- Where and when is voting taking place in the video?
- Why have some states expanded early voting and absentee voting this year?
- How is COVID-19 changing voter patterns this year?
- What do you think states and cities should do this year to make voting as safe and fair as possible?
- Do you think regions with growing cases of COVID-19 should change or adapt voting procedures? Why or why not?
Media literacy: What news do you think was most important from this summary? What important news are you aware of that was left out?
Dig Deeper: With voting expected to shatter records this year, many question whether election infrastructure in the United States is capable of handling the higher number of voters fairly and accurately. To better understand the debate over the most safe, effective voting methods, watch the video below. Then ask your students what ideas they have to make voting safe, fair and reliable. For a full lesson using the video below, click here.
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