The Primary Election is just eight days away--and voter turnout is expected to be dismally low. 

Two democratic gubernatorial candidates are using the low voter turnout to highlight their plans to increase voting accessibility in Kentucky. 

Adam Edelen and Andy Beshear rolled out their plans to increase voter participation Monday.

Adam Edelen's plan is made up of four key reforms. 

  • Automatic Voter Registration-with an easy opt-out for those who do not want to be registered.
  • Expanded early voting opportunities two weeks prior to Election Day or Primary Day. Kentuckians would not need a reason to vote early. 
  • Extend mail-in voting option to all registered voters. 
  • Allow county clerks to offer "Voting Convenience Centers," where anyone in the county can vote up to two weeks prior in libraries or other public buildings 

Edelen previously rolled out his plan for restoration of felon voting rights. 

“We need to stop blaming working people for low turnout in our elections while Frankfort does nothing to help make it easier for people to have a voice in their government,” Edelen said in a release. “It’s time to stop throwing up barriers between Kentuckians and their right to vote and to bring real reform that will make it easier for Kentuckians to have their voices heard.”

Andy Beshear also released his plan to expand voting access in the commonwealth Tuesday. His plan has some similar ideas to Edelen's. His plan includes:

  • Automatic Voter Registration for anyone visiting a government agency, unless they opt-out
  • Early voting for one month leading up to Election Day, and no excuse absentee voting 
  • Allowing eligible voters to register up to one week before the election
  • Keeping polls open until 9 PM
  • Signing an executive order to automatically restore voting rights for nonviolent felony offenders 
  • Creating new registration fees for Super PACs

“Voting is the bedrock of our democracy and we have a moral responsibility to protect and expand the right to vote—for everyone. As attorney general, I’ve launched a specialized unit to protect voting rights. But that’s not enough,” said Andy Beshear in a release. “For too many Kentuckians, it’s simply too hard to vote. That’s unacceptable and part of the reason why many people feel like Frankfort doesn’t represent their interests. As governor, I’ll focus on these concrete steps to make it easier to vote and include every community in our democratic process.”

Rocky Adkins released his plan to increase voter access in February. His plan is similar, and includes automatic voter registration, extending poll hours and restoration of felon voting rights.