Polls will open at 7 a.m. today across Comanche County and the state as voters cast ballots in the 2020 primary elections and State Question 802.
Precincts will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Comanche County Election Board officials said strict sanitation protocols and social distancing requirements will be in place to protect voters and precinct workers.
For most Comanche County voters, ballots will be limited to statewide races, although Republicans in Oklahoma House District 62 (which includes Lawton) will choose between incumbent Rep. Daniel Pae or challenger John Roberts.
Residents in Cotton, Jackson, Greer, Kiowa, Stephens and Tillman counties also will be deciding their nominees in county sheriff, county commissioner and court clerk races, and includes the Stephens County Republican race between Sheriff Wayne McKinney and challenger Cris Lang. Voters in Oklahoma House Districts 52 and 56, and Oklahoma Senate 43 also will be deciding their party nominees.
Statewide, Democrats and Republicans will be selecting their nominees for U.S. Senate and U.S. House, while Republicans will be voting for their nominee in the Corporation Commission race.
Only registered Republican voters may cast ballots in the Republican primaries, while Democratic primaries are open to registered Democrats and Independents.
State voters also will decide State Question 802, which asks residents to amend the State Constitution to specify Oklahoma will expand Medicaid coverage for people between the ages of 18 and 65, who are not already covered by insurance and whose annual income, as calculated by federal law, is at or below 133 percent of the federal poverty line. The state could not enact new provisions to make it more difficult to qualify for Medicaid and the program must be implemented by July 1, 2021, under the proposition.
Supporters say the state question will provide health care coverage to an additional 200,000 Oklahomans who meet the federal poverty definition while providing the financial support to keep more rural hospitals open. They say the action will bring federal dollars back to Oklahoma while having a positive impact on the state economy beyond the initial investment of federal dollars for health care coverage.
Opponents say the measure amends the State Constitution and will force the state to provide matching funds to federal dollars, meaning potential cuts to other core services. They also say there is no guarantee of continued matching dollars from the federal government (which would force the state to make up that shortage) and that the proposal does not identify a source for matching state funds.