Fauci says in-person voting can be done safely, provided proper precautions are observed

The nation is still grappling with the ongoing coronavirus crisis as the general election nears

Updated: August 14, 2020 - 1:08pm

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National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Director Dr.  Anthony Fauci says that if people follow appropriate precautions, safe in-person voting should be possible during the upcoming 2020 general election.

Fauci, who has risen to national prominence amid the protracted COVID-19 epidemic, made the comments to ABC News's Deborah Roberts during a National Geographic event that aired Thursday.

"I think if carefully done, according to the guidelines, there's no reason that I can see why that not be the case. For example, you know, when you look at going to a grocery store now in many regions and counties and cities that are doing it correctly, they have X's every six or more feet. And it says, 'Don't leave this spot until the person in front of you left their spot.' And you can do that, if you go and wear a mask, if you observe the physical distancing, and don't have a crowded situation, there's no reason why you shouldn't be able to do that," Fauci said.

He added that those "compromised physically or otherwise" who do not wish to vote in-person can use mail-in voting. "So there's no reason why we shouldn't be able to vote in person or otherwise," he said.

According to Johns Hopkins University there have been more than 5.2 million COVID-19 cases in the U.S. and more than 166,000 deaths.