Facebook co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg and his wife, Priscilla Chan, have announced an additional commitment of up to $100 million in support of efforts to promote safe and reliable voting in November.
The gift to the Center for Tech and Civic Life (CTCL) follows a $250 million commitment announced by the couple in September in support of the organization's efforts to ensure that counties have the staff, training, and equipment needed to ensure that every eligible voter can vote and every vote is counted, along with $50 million to the nonprofit, nonpartisan Center for Election Innovation & Research (CEIR). Pledged in response to unprecedented demand for support from local election jurisdictions, the funds will ensure that election administrators are fully funded despite a number of legal challenges by state and local officials aimed at blocking the use of the funds.
According to CTCL, more than twenty-one hundred jurisdictions have applied for support to date.
"We've gotten a far greater response than we expected from election officials needing funding for voting infrastructure," Zuckerberg wrote in a Facebook post, "so today we're committing an additional $100 million to the Center for Tech and Civic Life to make sure that every jurisdiction that needs funding to help people vote safely can get it."
"We've seen massive interest in the COVID-19 Response Grant program over the last month from...election officials who are seeking funding to ensure safe, healthy election options for voters in every corner of the country," said CTCL executive director Tiana Epps-Johnson. "Every local election office responsible for administering activities covered by the CTCL COVID-19 Response Grant Program is eligible to apply, and every eligible election department that is verified as legitimate will be approved for a grant. I'm thrilled that these additional funds will allow us to continue to meet the tremendous demand."