(Bloomberg) -- The end of straight-ticket voting leads to long lines in Texas. And a nonprofit is sending hot pizza and food trucks to voters waiting in line.
There are 20 days until the election and 62 days until the Electoral College meets.
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End of Straight-Ticket Voting Leads to Long Lines in Texas
Long lines have been reported in early voting in Georgia, Ohio and Virginia due to intense voter interest, equipment malfunctions and social distancing requirements.
In Texas, you can add one more reason: the end of straight-ticket voting.
Facing increasing Democratic strength in the state, the Republican-led legislature voted to end straight-ticket voting starting with this year’s election, leading to long lines on the first day of early voting Tuesday.
The practice, which allows voters to pick all candidates of one party, was particularly popular in some of Texas’s large urban counties, where more than two-thirds of voters took advantage of it in 2016. It was something of a time saver, since Texas ballots can have a lot of down-ballot races and other local measures.
This will also be the first presidential election without straight-ticket voting in the battleground states of Pennsylvania and Michigan. Only six states still allow straight-ticket voting: Alabama, Indiana, Michigan, Kentucky, Oklahoma and South Carolina.
Pizza to the Polls Is Sending Food Trucks to Polling Places
One group is hoping to make those long lines at polling places a little less rough by sending in hot pizza and food trucks.
Started in 2016, the nonprofit Pizza to the Polls collects reports of long wait times at polling places around the country, then pays local restaurants to deliver pizzas for voters, volunteers and elections officials.
This year, Pizza to the Polls is working with Uber Eats to send food trucks to cities in the battleground states of Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Michigan, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, as well as nine other states and Washington, D.C.
“Poll worker shortages are reducing the number of polling places — and social distancing measures are limiting the number of people who can vote at one time,” the group writes. “As a result, lines are getting longer. By launching food trucks in cities with a history of long lines, we plan to safely provide free, individually wrapped snacks and beverages to everyone.”
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