Moylan calls for postponement or cancellation of primary election

Senator James Moylan (PNC file photo)

Republican senator James Moylan has written a letter to Gov. Lou Leon Guerrero urging her to either postpone or cancel the upcoming primary election next week.

In his letter, Moylan noted that there is a great concern with the recent spike in positive COVID-19 cases on island and that the governor herself was compelled to issue an executive order that literally calls for a lockdown.

“This EO expires on Aug. 28, 2020, at noontime. The 2020 primary election shall be held the very next day. Considering that the objective of your actions today is to reduce the potential risks associated with spreading the virus through human interaction, wouldn’t we be defeating the purpose by lifting the stay-at-home order less than 24 hours before allowing the community to congregate in a larger scale gathering which elections on Guam have been known to be?” Moylan asked.

The senator added that while the governor doesn’t have the authority at this point to postpone or cancel the primary election, it would probably be in the best interest of the community if the governor submits legislation to the Guam Legislature to address the issue and possibly call for a special session next week for senators to discuss the issue.

“Time is of the essence. The very reason I had introduced Bill 375-35 along with Senator Therese Terlaje was because I was concerned about the health risks associated with large gatherings, and to give the Legislature and the Guam Election Commission ample time to prepare for a safe General Election. Unfortunately, the measure failed, and ironically as we are just 8 days away from the Primary Election, it seems that the public health emergency has escalated,” Moylan said.

As for the recommended action, whether it be an all-out cancelation or a postponement, Moylan said he will leave that to the governor’s discretion. But Moylan said what is important is assuring that after a week of asking the community to remain in a lockdown to reduce the COVID-19 spread, the governor won’t just open the door to islandwide election gatherings and find the community in another lockdown days or weeks later.