An Act regulating holding of elections in insurrectionary districts.
WHEREAS, In a portion of this State the lawful authority of the United States and the State of Kentucky is set at defiance; and within such district a revolutionary government is attempted to be set up, and many people are adhering thereto; as there are, however, within such rebellious part of the State, many loyal citizens who should not be deprived of voting, but who may be by the failure of sheriffs and other officers to discharge their duties; for remedy whereof,
BE it enacted by the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Kentucky:
SEC. 1. That upon the failure of the sheriff or other officer in said rebellious portions of the State, whose duty it is by law to hold elections, or whose duty it is to appoint officers of elections, or either or any of them, to discharge their respective duties as required by existing laws; and shall fail to open the polls by nine o'clock, A.M., on the day of election, then any three loyal citizens, residents of the precinct in which said election is to be held, and who shall be legal voters under the Constitution and laws of this State, are hereby authorized and empowered to open the polls and receive the votes of such persons presenting themselves as are legal voters. And the person or persons thus holding the election shall make return of the poll-books as now required by law, unless the county officers to whom any such return is required to be made, are in rebellion against the State or national government; in such case, the return shall be made to the Secretary of State, Governor, and Attorney General. Said persons so holding elections shall, in all cases, accompany their return with an affidavit of the failure or refusal of the proper officers to hold said elections; and when said returns are thus made, it shall be valid and binding in all respects as if regularly held under the provisions of the laws now in force. When, under the provisions of this act, returns are made to the Governor, Secretary of State, and Attorney General, that would, by existing laws, be made to county officers, then the Governor, Secretary of State, and Attorney General, shall constitute an examining board, and shall compare the poll-books, and award a certificate of election to the person receiving the highest number of votes.
SEC. 2. That the persons thus empowered by the provisions of this act to hold elections, shall be governed in all respects by the general laws now in force, so far as the same are applicable, and not in conflict with the provisions of this (act); and they shall be entitled to the same compensation and paid in the same way as similar officers of the law.
SEC. 3. This act shall take effect from its passage.