2020-09-23@00:09:18 GMT
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    By JULIE CARR SMYTH, Associated Press COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — A group of leading cybersecurity experts told an Ohio court that absentee ballot applications can be safely transmitted using email, countering the secretary of state's assertions that the practice would open up voting in the presidential battleground to outside interference. In a filing late Monday, eight experts in computer information and engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Georgetown, Princeton and other universities joined the American Civil Liberties Union and the Brennan Center for Justice in asking a state appellate court to allow the ballot applications to be accepted by electronic means. "Election officials can easily facilitate electronic submission of applications at little cost while minimizing associated security risks,” their...
    COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — A group of leading cybersecurity experts told an Ohio court that absentee ballot applications can be safely transmitted using email, countering the secretary of state’s assertions that the practice would open up voting in the presidential battleground to outside interference. In a filing late Monday, eight experts in computer information and engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Georgetown, Princeton and other universities joined the American Civil Liberties Union and the Brennan Center for Justice in asking a state appellate court to allow the ballot applications to be accepted by electronic means. “Election officials can easily facilitate electronic submission of applications at little cost while minimizing associated security risks,” their filing said. “Ideally this should be...
    MINNEAPOLIS — Registered voters in Minnesota will receive an absentee ballot request form in the mail as a growing number of states decide to send out applications automatically to people on their voter rolls amid the coronavirus pandemic. Minnesota Secretary of State Steve Simon agreed to the change Thursday after he was sued by the American Civil Liberties Union, the ACLU of Minnesota, and Faegre Drinker LLP on behalf of the NAACP and a handful of individual voters. “By helping secure greater access to voting, this agreement represents a step toward racial justice,” said ACLU of Minnesota staff attorney David McKinney in a statement. “It makes it much easier for people who are at greater risk from COVID, including...
    MTV will reportedly pay for the printing and mailing of ballot applications requested through the network’s voter initiative campaign.  MTV will pay for costs through Oct. 6, the deadline for voters to receive applications and return them on time, network executives told Axios.  Voters can access applications on the campaign websites www.VoteForYourLife.com or www.VoteEarlyDay.org.  The VoteForYourLife  campaign is sponsored by ViaComCBS, MTV’s parent company, and the Ad Council. Viacom’s Vh1 and Comedy Central are also partners in the campaign. The campaign’s website is also accessible in Spanish.  The VoteForYourLiife campaign will also feature PSAs across the company’s networks, including MTV, BET and Comedy Central, Axios noted.  Ahead of November’s election, many voting initiatives and education campaigns have focused on mail-in ballots amid concerns about in-person voting and...
    By DAVID EGGERT, Associated Press LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson's mass mailing of unsolicited absentee ballot applications to millions of 2020 voters was deemed legal by Michigan's appeals court, which ruled Wednesday she had “inherent” authority to act under a 2018 constitutional amendment expanding voting rights. The court upheld a lower judge's ruling in a 2-1 decision. “Defendant’s conduct did not interfere with Michigan qualified registered voters’ rights. Ultimately, it is up to each voter to decide whether to vote in person or apply for an absentee ballot,” Judges James Redford and Jonathan Tukel wrote. Benson, a Democrat, began sending the applications in May to all voters in the battleground state who were not already on...
    A Michigan state appeals court on Wednesday upheld the right of Michigan's top election official to send unsolicited absentee ballot applications to all of the state's registered voters. The ruling affirmed a lower court decision that Michigan's Democratic Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson had the authority to send the ballot applications statewide. The dispute arose in May when several Michigan voters sued to stop the mailing of ballot applications. A lower court in August ruled against the voters, prompting the appeal that was rejected Wednesday. The Brennan Center for Justice, a left-leaning nonprofit group that advocates for voting rights, hailed the Wednesday decision. The group had filed briefs in support of Benson and warned the court that siding against the state's top election official would create widespread confusion...
    The Texas Supreme Court has again barred Harris County, home to the city of Houston, from sending mail-in ballot applications to more than 2 million potential voters. The move was the latest in an ongoing legal fight between the county and Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, who has argued that applications should only be sent to voters qualified to cast ballots by mail. TEXAS FEDERAL JUDGE RULES MAIL-IN VOTING PROCEDURE UNCONSTITUTIONAL The Hill noted Tuesday that the ruling from the all-Republican court orders the county to refrain from sending unsolicited applications “until further order.” Houston is one of the Lone Star State's bluest-leaning cities and home to several districts that are highly competitive. While the county's Democratic clerk, Chris Hollins, said applications had...
    The Texas Supreme Court has blocked Harris County from sending mail-in ballot applications to the more than 2 million registered voters. The ruling came after Texas Republican Attorney General Ken Paxton requested the states high court to suspend the countys attempt to send the applications to voters before another order preventing it was set to expire. The decision forces the county to stop sending unsolicited applications "until further order." The Texas Supreme Court decision overturned a ruling Friday from a state district judge giving Harris County the right to send the applications. But Paxton quickly appealed the case to the states supreme court, arguing sending the ballots would confuse voters. "I strongly commend the Texas Supreme Court for stopping the Harris County Clerk...
    The Texas Supreme Court on Tuesday again issued a ruling blocking Harris County from sending mail-in ballot applications to all of its over 2 million registered voters amid an ongoing court battle. The ruling from the high court granted a request from Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton (R) to halt the county’s attempt to send the applications before a separate order barring the mailing was going to expire. The ruling from the all-Republican court orders the county to refrain from sending unsolicited applications “until further order.” The Supreme Court decision overturned a Friday ruling from a state district judge that allowed Harris County to send the applications, though Paxton, who has argued that sending unsolicited mailings would confuse voters, appealed...
    (CNN)Lawsuits being fought across the country are colliding with state deadlines to mail absentee ballots to voters, creating delays and stirring up new uncertainty over the ability of major swing states to handle the anticipated major surge of mail-in ballots this fall.In Pennsylvania, ongoing lawsuits over the Green Party candidate appearing on the ballot have prevented counties from sending mail-in ballots to voters. Wisconsin narrowly avoided absentee ballot chaos on Monday in a 4-3 state Supreme Court decision preventing the need for counties to reprint hundreds of thousands of ballots set to be mailed this week. There also are several states fighting over absentee ballot applications that were mailed to voters, in some cases forcing voters to reapply to receive...
    AUSTIN, Texas (CBSDFW.COM/AP) — Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton said Saturday that he’s appealing a judge’s decision to allow the Harris County clerk to send mail-in ballot applications to all registered voters in the county. Paxton is asking the 14th Court of Appeals in Houston to prevent Harris County Clerk Chris Hollins from sending applications to all 2.4 million Houston-area voters. A state judge ruled Friday that the county can proceed with its plan. Paxton argues that the plan violates the state constitution and Texas election law. “There has already been widespread confusion regarding who is and is not eligible to vote by mail during this election cycle,” Paxton’s office argues in the appeal. “Sending applications to millions of ineligible...
    BOSTON (AP) — Voters who have not already submitted vote-by-mail applications for the November election should keep an eye on their mailboxes in the coming days. The state is mailing vote-by-mail applications to all registered voters who have not already submitted an application for a ballot. Voters who have already applied for a November ballot don't need to re-apply, according to Secretary of the Commonwealth William Galvin, who oversees elections in Massachusetts. Voters who want to confirm receipt of their Vote by Mail application can go to www.TrackMyBallotMA.com, which will show a “pending” November ballot for anyone who already has an application on file. An earlier application sent out before the Sept. 1 primary allowed voters to apply for ballots...
    AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton said Saturday that he's appealing a judge’s decision to allow the Harris County clerk to send mail-in ballot applications to all registered voters in the county. Paxton is asking the 14th Court of Appeals in Houston to prevent Harris County Clerk Chris Hollins from sending applications to all 2.4 million Houston-area voters. A state judge ruled Friday that the county can proceed with its plan. Paxton argues that the plan violates the state constitution and Texas election law. “There has already been widespread confusion regarding who is and is not eligible to vote by mail during this election cycle," Paxton's office argues in the appeal. “Sending applications to millions of ineligible...
    AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton said Saturday that he’s appealing a judge’s decision to allow the Harris County clerk to send mail-in ballot applications to all registered voters in the county. Paxton is asking the 14th Court of Appeals in Houston to prevent Harris County Clerk Chris Hollins from sending applications to all 2.4 million Houston-area voters. A state judge ruled Friday that the county can proceed with its plan. Paxton argues that the plan violates the state constitution and Texas election law. “There has already been widespread confusion regarding who is and is not eligible to vote by mail during this election cycle,” Paxton’s office argues in the appeal. “Sending applications to millions of...
    Abby Livingston - Alexa Ura September 12, 2020 11:55AM (UTC) This article originally appeared on The Texas Tribune. Standing in front of a blue curtain adorned with the seal of the Republican Party of Texas, Allen West offered up what he deemed an "instructional video" for Harris County Clerk Chris Hollins. It had been a week since Hollins had announced his office would send an application for a mail-in ballot to every registered voter in the county — all 2.4 million of them. Since then, his plans had sparked alarm among top state Republicans, leading to two lawsuits meant to halt it before he could get the applications out. : Purporting to detail the difference between what Hollins, a...
    By JULIE CARR SMYTH, Associated Press COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — A judge ordered Ohio's elections chief on Friday to allow voters to apply for absentee ballots for the November presidential election by electronic means, including by fax or email, siding with Democrats in a legal dispute certain to be quickly appealed in the pivotal swing state. Franklin County Common Pleas Judge Stephen McIntosh's decision to grant the Ohio Democratic Party's motion was heralded by the party as a victory for voter access, while Republican Secretary of State Frank LaRose responded with alarm. “Today’s ruling rolls out the red carpet to Russian hackers — painting a giant bullseye on the back of our election system and upending the significant progress Ohio...
    AUSTIN, Texas. (CBSDFW.COM/AP) — The most populous county in Texas can move forward with plans to send all registered voters a mail-in ballot application for the November general election, a state judge ruled Friday. The ruling comes a week after Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, a Republican, sued Harris County Clerk Chris Hollins to stop his office from sending mail-in ballot applications to all 2.4 million Houston area voters. The county announced earlier this month that they planned to send registered voters an application, regardless of whether they qualify to vote by mail. Paxton has been outspoken about attempts by counties at urging voters to request mail-in ballots despite not following requirements, such as disabilities, due to the COVID-19 pandemic....
    Rhode Island Secretary of State Nellie Gorbea announced Friday that every registered, active voter in Rhode Island will receive an application for a mail-in ballot ahead of Election Day. “Making it easy for Rhode Islanders to vote safely and securely from home will ensure that voters aren’t forced to choose between their health and their constitutional right to vote,” Gorbea said in an official statement. Gorbea said she can send mail-in ballot applications to voters without approval from the state legislature. (RELATED: Battleground States May See Unprecedented Amounts Of Absentee Ballot Rejections) Ballot applications will begin arriving over the next week to ensure voters have enough time to return their applications and receive their mail-in ballots, according to Gorbea....
    BOSTON (CBS) — Interested in voting by mail this November? Check your mailbox. Secretary of State William Galvin said Friday that vote by mail applications are going out to every voter who has not already submitted an application for a mail-in ballot. “We are not mailing applications to voters who have already applied, so there is no need to worry if you do not receive one in the mail this time,” Galvin said in a statement. The United States Postal Service says any applications for vote-by-mail should be returned by Oct. 20 at the latest, and Galvin’s office is encouraging voters to submit their applications as soon as possible. Ballots will start being mailed out in the first week of...
    PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Rhode Island will send applications for mail-in ballots to every registered voter in the state in advance of the Nov. 3 general election, officials announced Friday. Secretary of State Nellie Gorbea said she's taking the action to make it easy to vote from home and to avoid crowding polling places during the coronavirus pandemic. Voters should begin receiving applications at home starting Saturday, she said. “It's going to ensure that voters don’t have to choose between their health and their constitutional right to vote,” Gorbea said. Joined at a press conference by a member of the state's Board of Elections, Gorbea said she has the authority to send mail-in ballot applications without any specific approval by...
    Officials are sending absentee ballot applications to registered voters in the Hawkeye State, Iowa Secretary of State Paul Pate (R) affirmed on Friday. “Iowans will begin receiving absentee ballot request forms from my office this weekend,” Pate announced. “You can vote from home, in-person at your county auditor’s office or at the polls on Election Day. I want every eligible Iowan to participate and to be safe while voting”: Iowans will begin receiving absentee ballot request forms from my office this weekend. You can vote from home, in-person at your county auditor’s office or at the polls on Election Day. I want every eligible Iowan to participate and to be safe while voting. #BeAVoter #VoteSafeIA pic.twitter.com/lxFxMB7EAr — Iowa Secretary of...
    Washington, DC (CNN)Vote-by-mail applications have become the latest flashpoint as states move to help an unprecedented number of voters prepare to cast ballots remotely in the November presidential election amid the coronavirus pandemic.Lawsuits have erupted in multiple states as Democrats and Republicans jockey for advantage, with challenges to forms sent out by officials as well as from third-party groups. How to vote How to make sure your 2020 mail-in vote is counted Who can vote? US elections, explained The Electoral College, explained The latest action is in Iowa and New Hampshire. In late August, a state judge in Iowa's second-largest county invalidated more than 50,000 pre-filled applications for absentee ballots after President Donald Trump's campaign filed a challenge, citing...
    ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — The November 3 Primary Election Day is now less than two months away. Maryland’s Board of Elections approved Friday more local voting plans, for an election unlike any other. Gov. Hogan this summer opted for an in-person general election, but asked the Maryland Board of Elections to send mail-in ballot applications to all voters. The deadline to register is October 13, though Maryland does have same-day registration at the polls. Requests for a mail-in ballot must be received by October 20, two weeks before the general election. As of Friday, more than 520,000 Marylanders requested a ballot be sent to them. On Tuesday, Gov. Hogan criticized the board for delays in getting those applications to voters....
    Iowa is sending all active registered voters an absentee ballot application for the Nov. 3 general election this weekend, the Iowa Secretary of State’s office announced Friday. “Iowans have options about how they choose to cast their vote,” Secretary of State Paul Pate (R) said in a statement. “You can vote from home, you can vote in-person at your county auditor’s office, or at the polls on Election Day. The key is we want every eligible Iowan to participate and to be safe while voting.” The applications include pre-paid, first class mail postage. The state sent every registered voter a mail-in ballot application during the June 2 GOP primary, which resulted in record-high voter participation of more than 530,000 Iowans,...
    (CNN)An Ohio-based political advocacy group that shares a Republican-allied law firm with Kanye West's political campaign is sending unsolicited mail-in ballot applications containing misinformation on Democratic candidates to voters in Pennsylvania and Minnesota -- both key battleground states for the 2020 election.Common Sense Voters of America LLC, which was registered in June by the same law firm representing West in his suit to get on the Ohio ballot, sent mailers in August containing images of fake headlines about Democratic nominee Joe Biden. This mailer was sent by a dark money group to Pennsylvania voters last month.While the mail-in ballot applications sent to voters appear to be legitimate, the mailers also include misinformation about Democratic candidates including Biden, his running mate...
    SAN ANTONIO – In a rare move for Charles Butt, the San Antonio-based grocery chain owner wrote to the Texas Supreme Court in support of Harris County’s plan to send vote-by-mail applications to all its voters. Harris County is in the middle of legal challenges over its plan to send applications for mail-in ballots to registered voters 65 and older. Voters who receive the applications would still need to verify their information and send them in to election administrators to receive the actual ballot. Bexar County’s Elections Department has confirmed it has similar plans in the works. The plan has been opposed by Republicans Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and Attorney General Ken Paxton, who claim it could lead to election...
              Facebook buzzed on September 1 as many Ohioans received absentee ballot applications – the state’s primary step in equipping voters who want to vote absentee with the needed paperwork. PSA:The Ohio Secretary of State sending absentee ballot applications is not a new practice. Posted by Jack Windsor on Wednesday, September 2, 2020 The post received 230 comments. A few: “This was done in 2016 for sure. See article. “We’ve never gotten them b4 this year & we’ve received 3 each, my husband and I. Plus we received ballot applications for 3 of the previous owners.” “Pretty scary though when I get one for a person that does not live at my house...
    The Texas Supreme Court has temporarily blocked Harris County from sending mail-in ballot applications to all its voters for the November election. The decision Wednesday came in response to a lawsuit filed days ago by Republicans in the state’s largest county. Attorney General Ken Paxton has since launched his own legal challenge to the plan. Harris County Clerk Chris Hollins announced last month that the county would send applications to its more than 2.4 million registered voters, an effort to make it easier to participate in the election during the coronavirus pandemic. After being sued by Paxton, Hollins said he would only send applications to voters 65 and older, who are eligible to vote by mail under state law, pending the litigation. A spokesperson said Wednesday that those...
    AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — The Texas Supreme Court on Wednesday stopped, for now, a plan to send more than 2 million mail-in ballot applications to registered Houston-area voters before the November election. The temporary stay comes after GOP activists sued Harris County elections officials over intentions to send a mail ballot application to all registered voters in the state’s most populous county, regardless of whether they’re eligible to vote by mail. Texas generally limits mail voting to citizens with disabilities or those 65 or older, and is one of the few states not allowing more people to vote by mail this year over COVID-19 fears. Texas’ GOP leaders have resisted calls to expand mail balloting, keeping them aligned with President...
    ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — The Maryland State Board of Elections has mailed absentee ballot applications to all state voters, Gov. Larry Hogan said Tuesday. With exactly nine weeks to go before Election Day, Hogan said the board told him Tuesday all applications have been mailed. The board began mailing the applications last week. RELATED COVERAGE: Maryland Begins Sending Out 4 Million Mail-In Ballot Applications As Lawmakers Criticize Postal Service Cuts How To Request A Mail-In Ballot In Maryland For November 2020 Election Maryland Adding Hundreds Of Ballot Drop Boxes For Election Despite calls from some for Hogan to move to an entirely mail-in election or to mail all registered voters a ballot rather than an application, the state...
    Republican Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton filed a lawsuit Monday against Harris County Clerk Chris Hollins for allegedly violating Texas election laws after Hollins refused to drop plans to send out applications for mail-in ballots to more than 2 million registered voters. Paxton is trying to stop Hollins from proactively sending out the ballot applications to every registered voter in the county, claiming Hollins isn’t legally allowed to do so, according to the lawsuit. “Election officials have a duty to reject mail-in ballot applications from voters who are not eligible to vote by mail. Unfortunately, instead of protecting the integrity of our democratic process, the Harris County Clerk decided to knowingly violate election laws by preparing to send over two...
    AUSTIN, Texas (CBSDFW.COM/AP) – The fight over mail balloting in Texas grew Monday when the state sued to stop more than two million registered voters around Houston from receiving applications to submit their ballots by mail. Harris County this month announced plans to send all registered voters the application, regardless of whether they qualify to vote by mail — which is generally restricted in Texas to voters who are 65 or older, disabled or will be outside the county on Election Day. Several states have loosened mail voting restrictions this year because of COVID-19 concerns, most recently New York. But Texas’ GOP leaders have resisted calls to expand mail balloting, keeping them aligned with President Donald Trump, who has claimed...
    AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — The fight over mail balloting in Texas, one of the few states not allowing more people to vote by mail in November, grew Monday when the state sued to stop more than 2 million registered voters around Houston from receiving applications to submit their ballots by mail. Harris County this month announced plans to send all registered voters the application, regardless of whether they qualify to vote by mail — which is generally restricted in Texas to voters who are 65 or older, disabled or will be outside the county on Election Day. Several states have loosened mail voting restrictions this year because of COVID-19 concerns, most recently New York. But Texas’ GOP leaders have...
    The attorney general in Texas has warned Harris County to halt mail-in ballots or face legal consequences. Republican Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, who has suggested for months that steering voters toward wrongly applying for mail-in ballots could result in prosecution, filed a lawsuit Monday claiming Harris County Clerk Chris Hollins violated Texas election laws and shouldn’t have sent unsolicited mail-in ballot applications to more than million registered voters in the county. CLICK HERE FOR FULL CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE “Election officials have a duty to reject mail-in ballot applications from voters who are not eligible to vote by mail," Paxton said in a statement. "Unfortunately, instead of protecting the integrity of our democratic process, the Harris County Clerk decided to knowingly violate election laws by preparing to send over 2  million ballot applications...
    A judge in Iowa ruled that the state's election commissioner acted beyond his authority by sending out absentee ballot applications with voter's personal information pre-filled. Judge Ian Thornhill voided 50,000 absentee ballots after siding with the Trump campaign in its lawsuit against Linn County Auditor Joel Miller. The campaign had argued that Miller, a Democrat, did not have the authority to send 140,000 voters absentee ballot applications with their personal information, including their voting numbers, already added. President Trump's reelection campaign argued that “rogue auditor” Miller had compromised the security of the elections by sending the absentee applications with the personal information completed. Miller argued that he was trying to make it as easy as possible for voters...
    This content was republished with permission from WTOP’s news partners at Maryland Matters. Sign up for Maryland Matters’ free email subscription today. Some Marylanders who applied for mail-in ballots online are still receiving applications in the mail, leading some lawmakers and voting rights advocates to worry about voter confusion in an already unprecedented election. State Sen. Cheryl C. Kagan (D-Montgomery) said she and her staff went through the State Board of Elections’ multistep online ballot application process on July 29. And although voters who fill out the online request aren’t supposed to receive an application in the mail, Kagan and her staff members all got one on Thursday. Kagan said she and her staff aren’t alone: She took to Facebook...
    (CNN)A state judge in Iowa's second-largest county has invalidated more than 50,000 applications for absentee ballots, prompting election officials to re-send applications to thousands of voters because of problems with the original forms.The judge sided with the Trump campaign and the Republican Party, which filed a lawsuit this month seeking to discard the absentee ballot request forms. The Trump campaign argued the forms should have been blank except for the election date and type, per the Iowa secretary of state's directions. Local officials in Linn County, which is home to Cedar Rapids, ignored those directions and sent out the applications with more information anyway. "It is implausible to conclude that near total completion of an absentee ballot application by the...
    ATLANTA (AP) — After an investigation found that election officials in the Georgia’s most populous county failed to process some absentee ballot applications for the June primary, the state election board on Thursday referred the matter to the state attorney general to determine whether laws were broken. After delaying the primary elections because of the coronavirus pandemic, Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger encouraged Georgia voters to vote by absentee ballot and sent an absentee ballot application to every active voter. That led to an unprecedented flood of applications into county election offices. Election officials in Fulton County, which includes most of Atlanta, have previously acknowledged the challenges that caused, saying they were exacerbated by the virus outbreak and technical problems....
    By DAVID EGGERT, Associated Press LANSING, Mich. (AP) — A Michigan judge on Wednesday dismissed a lawsuit challenging the secretary of state's mailing of absentee ballot applications to millions of voters who did not request one, ruling that Jocelyn Benson had “clear and broad” authority to do so. State Court of Claim Judge Cynthia Stephens' decision had been signaled after she rejected a request for a preliminary injunction in June. Benson, a Democrat, in May began sending the applications to all voters who were not already on permanent absentee ballot lists for the August primary and November general elections, as a way to encourage absentee voting and dissuade in-person voting during the coronavirus pandemic. Stephens said Benson's actions are not...
    By: KDKA-TV News Staff PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — The Allegheny County Elections Division has begun sending out mail-in ballot applications to voters who have not applied yet. The county says the process will span several weeks. You can apply online here. If you want to vote in person, just throw out the application and vote on Election Day. The county says you can check on your application on the ballot tracker here.
    BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Maryland’s State Board of Elections expects a record number of people to vote by mail in the closely-watched upcoming presidential election. Deputy Administrator Nikki Charleson spoke to WJZ as her office began mailing out the first applications for mail-in ballots. “If you can vote by mail, do so. It is the safest way to vote in a pandemic,“ she told WJZ Investigator Mike Hellgren. “We are expecting the election as a whole to have very high turnout. Our voters are very engaged.” Charleson rejected criticism from those who say the reduction from 1,600 in-person polling places to 360 larger voting centers could disenfranchise voters. “By moving predominantly to high schools or large rooms, officials can process more...
    A Facebook post incorrectly asserts an Illinois couple who received multiple unsolicited ballot applications can ask for them all and fraudulently vote with them all, the Better Government Association said.They cannot, and neither can anyone else.Alejandra Cancino with BGA joined ABC 7 Chicago Saturday to talk about why.Election officials are required to conduct a verification process on ballot applications that makes it highly unlikely such a scheme would work. It's also illegal, and anyone who tried to do this would be guilty of a felony, and likely get caught.RELATED: Mail-in voting Illinois: How to request a vote-by-mail ballot in ILIt's the kind of situation floated by opponents of voting by mail to warn of possible abuse, the BGA said.And there's...
    BOSTON (CBS) – Drop boxes are being put up across Boston so residents can vote by mail. Voters can find the drop boxes at Boston City Hall and every early voting location. A ballot and vote-by-mail application drop box at Boston City Hall Plaza. (Image Credit: City of Boston) Drop off your application to vote by mail or the completed ballot. A reminder you only have until this Saturday to register to vote in the state primary on September 1.
    MARLBORO (CBS) – The demand is high for mail-in ballots in Marlboro. I think the biggest challenge is just trying to stay on top of the volume,” City Clerk Steve Kerrigan said. Kerrigan estimates the requests for mail-in ballots are triple or quadruple what the city usually sees in a presidential election year. Marlboro City Clerk Steve Kerrigan says everyone who applies by the deadline will receive a mail-in ballot. (WBZ-TV) With the state primary a week away, cities and towns are dealing with a crush of applications for mail-in ballots. Last month, a new law was passed that allows voters to bypass going to the polls and vote by mail without a reason. While the law is controversial, it...
    The Trump campaign announced it is proceeding with lawsuits against two Democratic-leaning counties in Iowa that have promoted absentee ballots due to the coronavirus pandemic. The Republican National Committee is also listed on the suits, which seek to invalidate thousands of absentee ballot applications that were sent to voters by officials in Linn and Johnson counties and included prewritten information such as voting pin numbers, dates of birth, and names already filled out. Voters only have to sign and return the ballot applications to receive an early ballot in October that they can file before the election date on Nov. 3. Iowa Secretary of State Paul Pate, a Republican, said in July that allowing some counties to send...
    President Trump blamed Democrats for holding up a coronavirus stimulus package over demands that additional funds be allocated for the Post Office and mail-in voting this November. “They want $3.5 billion dollars for something that’ll turn out to be fraudulent — that’s election money. Basically, they want $3.5 billion for the mail-in votes, OK,” Trump said during an interview Thursday with Maria Bartiromo on Fox Business Network. “They want $25 billion, billion, for the Post Office. Now, they need that money in order to have the Post Office work so it can take all of these millions and millions of ballots,” the president continued. Stimulus talks have hit a stalemate in Congress over the amount of funding for a new...
    The self-described nonpartisan group Honest Elections Project condemned an organization in Virginia on Tuesday for sending out hundreds of thousands of absentee ballots to state voters who did not request them. The Center for Voter Information, which is affiliated with a nonprofit called the Voter Participation Center, sent over 800,000 mail-in ballot applications last week, aiming to “empower” eligible voters with a focus on unmarried women, people of color and young voters. “A Virginia group mailing a ballot application to a pet sounds like a funny story, but suppose it were an actual ballot? That is the risk of a jury-rigged vote-by-mail election," Jason Snead, Executive Director of Honest Elections Project, told Fox News. "To say nothing of the virtual certainty of ballots...
            Hundreds of thousands of applications for mail-in ballots that a voter-advocacy group sent to voters in Virginia had the wrong return addresses, adding another complication for state election officials who are already hard-pressed to pull off a smooth election in a pandemic. The Virginia Department of Elections said the return envelopes were addressed to the wrong election office, which would force election officials to forward the applications to the correct office for processing. Meanwhile, the department said anyone wanting to vote absentee should apply for a ballot through the state’s website. The problem mailers were sent by The Center for Voter Information, a third-party group not affiliated with the state, department said in a news...
    A political organization founded by a Democratic campaign veteran and an affiliated group has sent 800,000 applications for mail-in ballots to potential voters in numerous states, but many contain numerous flaws, which has caused confusion and angered elections officials, the Washington Examiner reported. The Center for Voter Information, identified by the non-partisan Center for Responsive Politics as a liberal advocacy organization, along with the Voter Participation Center have claimed to have sent the applications to “empower” voters, especially the “Rising American Electorate” of single women, minorities and young voters, the Examiner said. However, many of the mail-in ballot applications contained incorrect information, including the hundreds of thousands sent to potential voters in Virginia this week that had the wrong addresses of...
    Maryland’s top election official said ballot applications for the November general election will be mailed to eligible residents starting Aug. 24, following sharp criticism from Gov. Larry Hogan on the delay. Hogan sent Lamone a letter on Monday in which he inquired about a delay in voters receiving their ballot applications. He expressed concern about a repeat of the state’s June primary, which he called an “unmitigated disaster” after thousands of ballots went to the wrong address, were received late or not at all. Linda Lamone, administrator for the state’s elections board, said in a letter responding to Hogan that the first mailings were set to go out Aug. 24 and will continue until all ballots are on their way....
    ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — A day after a fiery letter from Gov. Larry Hogan demanded the Maryland State Board of Elections put forth its plan for how it will administer the general election in November within 48 hours, the agency’s administrator said absentee ballot applications will be sent to all eligible voters by the end of August. In response to Hogan’s letter on Tuesday, elections board administrator Linda Lamone outlined a number of hurdles the board has faced in trying to follow the plan the governor put forth last month. READ: Linda Lamone Response Letter To Gov. Larry Hogan Hogan has championed a hybrid form for the election, with as many voters as possible being urged to mail their ballots...
            by Julie Carr Smyth  COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Voting rights groups and Democrats filed two, separate lawsuits in Ohio Friday that the parties said were aimed at making voting easier in the battleground state this November amid the coronavirus pandemic. The legal action aims to expand online and email ballot applications and Republicans, including Secretary of State Frank LaRose, criticized the efforts. A GOP spokesman accusing the groups of “indifference to election security.” The American Civil Liberties Union and the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law brought one suit on behalf of voting rights groups and an individual, arguing that Ohio has an unconstitutional signature-matching requirement for ballots applications and ballots. The parties, including...
    LANSING, Mich. (AP) —  During a media conference Wednesday, Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson said a sharp increase in the number of people voting by mail due to the coronavirus pandemic could slow the counting of ballots in Michigan’s August primary, and the November general election. Benson also defended the action her office took to send all registered voters in Michigan absentee ballot applications, a costly endeavor that Republican legislators say could lead to voter fraud. Nearly 2 million registered voters have requested to vote by mail for the Aug. 4 primary. Just over a million people cast ballots by mail in the 2016 general election. This is after Benson’s office spent $4.5 million of federal funds to mail absentee...
    MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — With November’s general election just 102 days away, Minnesota’s primary election is creeping up even faster. On Aug. 11, voters will either go to the polls in person, or must have their mail-in ballots postmarked. Minnesota Secretary of State Steve Simon says “every person this year who votes by mail is making the polling place a little bit safer for those who chose the regular option.” According to Simon, COVID-19 is driving the necessary changes. Already, nearly 470,000 Minnesotans have requested to vote absentee. That’s an amazing 12-times the number requesting mail in voting at this point in 2018. This year’s demand obliterates the demand in the 2016 Presidential election, when only 20,000 absentee ballots were requested...
    Chicago Board of Elections vote by mail applications are in hot demand. With 100 days before the election application deadline, 134,000 voters have applied. That's thousands more than the recent Illinois primary, 2016 presidential election and during World War II."We are expecting doubling, tripling, even quintupling that record from 1944 and from earlier this year in March," said Jim Allen, Chicago Board of Elections spokesman.A presidential election combined with COVID-19 is making voting by mail a very popular option. President Trump has claimed, and in social media posts he has called vote by mail ballots fraudulent, even though the president himself has voted by mail.The Chicago Board of Elections said studies show vote by mail fraud in national elections is...
    ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia Democrats announced on Monday a list of five finalists who are under consideration to replace Rep. John Lewis on the November ballot. The finalists are: a state senator, a state representative, the head of the state NAACP, an Atlanta city councilman and the former president of a prominent historically Black college. A select group of Georgia Democrats sifted through more than 100 applications to decide who will replace Lewis on the ballot after the longtime congressman and civil rights leader’s death last week. The Democratic Party of Georgia said it received 131 applications by its Sunday evening deadline, as the group works to quickly fill the ballot spot for the 5th Congressional District, which includes parts...
    ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia Democrats will gather Monday to decide a replacement on November's ballot for U.S. Rep. John Lewis, who died Friday after serving for more than 30 years in Congress. The seat will remain empty until Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp schedules a special election. The Republican governor has given no indication when he will hold an election with just over six months left in Lewis' term. State law allows the Democratic Party to replace Lewis on the ballot in the 5th Congressional District, but the decision has to be made quickly for the district that includes much of the city of Atlanta. The Democratic Party of Georgia is accepting applications for the nomination online until 6:30 p.m. Sunday....
    ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia Democrats will gather Monday to decide a replacement on November’s ballot for U.S. Rep. John Lewis, who died Friday after serving for more than 30 years in Congress. The seat will remain empty until Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp schedules a special election. The Republican governor has given no indication when he will hold an election with just over six months left in Lewis’ term. State law allows the Democratic Party to replace Lewis on the ballot in the 5th Congressional District, but the decision has to be made quickly for the district that includes much of the city of Atlanta. The Democratic Party of Georgia is accepting applications for the nomination online until 6:30 p.m. Sunday....
    Secretary of state Brad Raffensperger issued the following statement on Tuesday: Stacey Abrams and her political fund-raising group Fair Fight Action are deliberately spreading misinformation to Georgia voters. After a credible report that Fulton County unlawfully decided to stop accepting absentee requests sent by email, Abrams’ Fair Fight Action called on the Secretary of State’s office to “compel all 159 counties to accept email applications for absentee ballots.” The problem with Fair Fight’s release is that there is zero evidence that any county other Fulton was not properly accepting absentee ballot applications submitted via email, as is required by Georgia law. “Politicians, even failed gubernatorial candidates, should know better than deliberately spreading election misinformation,” said Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger....
    BOSTON (AP) — A group of minority voters filed a petition Monday urging Massachusetts’ highest court to order the state to send applications to request a mail-in ballot to voters this week. The petition was brought by a group of Black, Latino and Asian-American voters and the organizations Common Cause Massachusetts and MassVOTE, who say the court must step in to “ensure that the Commonwealth’s citizens may safely vote in the upcoming elections, despite the ongoing viral pandemic.” Republican Gov. Charlie Baker recently signed a bill into law that will allow all registered voters who want to vote by mail for the remaining 2020 elections, including the Sept. 1 state primary and Nov. 3 general election. “In addition, in-person voting...
    BOSTON (AP) — A group of minority voters filed a petition Monday urging Massachusetts’ highest court to order the state to send applications to request a mail-in ballot to voters this week. The petition was brought by a group of Black, Latino and Asian-American voters and the organizations Common Cause Massachusetts and MassVOTE, who say the court must step in to “ensure that the Commonwealth’s citizens may safely vote in the upcoming elections, despite the ongoing viral pandemic.” Republican Gov. Charlie Baker recently signed a bill into law that will allow all registered voters who want to vote by mail for the remaining 2020 elections, including the Sept. 1 state primary and Nov. 3 general election. ”In addition, in-person voting...
    ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — Gov. Larry Hogan is directing the State Board of Elections to keep all polling places open for the general election in November despite the coronavirus pandemic. In a letter to the board’s chairman on Wednesday, Hogan also called on the state to send out absentee ballot application requests to all eligible voters and make every effort to promote absentee and early voting as well as voting during off-peak hours. “Every early voting center should be open and every polling location should be open on Election Day to accommodate anyone who wishes to cast their ballot safely and in person,” the letter reads. RELATED COVERAGE: Maryland Senators Recommend Ways To Avoid Election Problems Election Officials Blame...
              Requests for absentee ballots are up by nearly one million compared to 2016, an increase of 350 percent, according to the Michigan Secretary of State. Compared to this time in 2016 — 35 days before the primary election —the number of applications for absentee ballots is up by 945,605. Michigan has issued nearly 1,006,000 ballots compared to just 283,731 in 2016. More than 35,000 have already been returned, compared to the a little more than 23,800 four years ago. “Michigan voters have embraced their right to vote from home with enormous enthusiasm,” said Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson in a statement. New voter registration is also up by more than 11,000. Michigan residents...
    Nashville, Tennessee — Tennessee officials say they plan to enforce a requirement that first-time voters who register by mail cast their ballots in person, despite a judge's ruling that allows all eligible voters to cast absentee ballots during the coronavirus pandemic. The state attorney general's office provided the interpretation in response to a separate federal lawsuit that seeks to block the in-person requirement and two other absentee voting laws before the Aug. 6 primary election. In early June, a state court judge in Nashville ordered the expansion for all eligible voters during the pandemic. But her instructions did not directly address the first-time voter requirement. Get Breaking News Delivered to Your Inbox The Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law sought...
    NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee officials say they plan to enforce a requirement that first-time voters who register by mail cast their ballots in person, despite a judge’s ruling that allows all eligible voters to cast absentee ballots during the coronavirus pandemic. The state attorney general’s office provided the interpretation in response to a separate federal lawsuit that seeks to block the in-person requirement and two other absentee voting laws before the Aug. 6 primary election. In early June, a state court judge in Nashville ordered the expansion for all eligible voters during the pandemic. But her instructions did not directly address the first-time voter requirement. The Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law sought to block the...
    Republicans in red states are proposing bills to push back against general election absentee ballot applications sent out by their secretaries of state amid the global coronavirus pandemic.  The states include COVID-19-hit states like Arizona and Georgia and those with far fewer infections like Iowa, South Dakota and Wyoming, according to The Hill. Iowa GOP Gov. Kim Reynolds signed a bill to require the secretary of state to get approval from a bipartisan legislative council before sending out absentee ballot request forms. GOP Secretary of State Paul Pate had sent out applications to active voters for the primary and 80% of 524,000 Iowas June primary votes were cast via absentee ballots. Georgias House failed to pass a bill to prohibit GOP Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger or any...
    Voters drop off their presidential primary mail-in ballots at a drop box. Georgia voting rights advocates are pushing back on the state legislature’s attempt to limit absentee ballot use. Citing “capacity issues,” Republican legislators want to prevent the secretary of state and county boards of election from proactively mailing out absentee ballot applications, as was done ahead of the June 9 primary. Originally proposed as a way to “fix” several issues not addressed by an election reform bill that passed last year, in its new form, Senate Bill 463 is purportedly going to address the challenges voters faced in the primary including hours-long lines, malfunctioning voting machines, and requested absentee ballots never arriving. SB 463 was initially rushed through the Senate...
    By BEN NADLER, Associated Press ATLANTA (AP) — Republicans controlling a Georgia House committee approved legislation Wednesday that would prevent election officials from proactively sending mail ballot request forms to voters ahead of an election. If it makes it through both chambers and gets Gov. Brian Kemp’s signature, it could take effect ahead of November’s general elections. To protect voting rights during the coronavirus pandemic, Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, a Republican, sent absentee ballot applications to nearly 7 million active registered voters for the state’s June 9 primary elections, enabling huge numbers to avoid having to vote in person. That contributed to increased turnout, with turnout particularly high among Democrats. The election was marred by problems after poll...
    ATLANTA (AP) — Republicans controlling a Georgia House committee approved legislation Wednesday that would prevent election officials from proactively sending mail ballot request forms to voters ahead of an election. If it makes it through both chambers and gets Gov. Brian Kemp’s signature, it could take effect ahead of November’s general elections. To protect voting rights during the coronavirus pandemic, Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, a Republican, sent absentee ballot applications to nearly 7 million active registered voters for the state’s June 9 primary elections, enabling huge numbers to avoid having to vote in person. That contributed to increased turnout, with turnout particularly high among Democrats. The election was marred by problems after poll workers dropped out...
    By Sharon Bernstein | Reuters Ohio has taken the first step toward sending every registered voter in the state an application for an absentee ballot for November’s presidential and gubernatorial election, Republican Secretary of State Frank LaRose said Monday. The decision by a budgetary board to use federal funds to send the applications comes as mail-in voting has drawn criticism from incumbent Republican President Donald Trump, who has said universal vote by mail will lead to fraud. The state’s April primary election was delayed and moved to mostly absentee voting amid concerns about the raging coronavirus pandemic. But so many Ohioans – about 1.9 million – requested the absentee ballots that some were delayed in arriving, leading to frustration and...
    I have to admit, this is a strategy that never occurred to me: burning your own absentee ballot application to protest too much voting by the other side. This should become a national movement. Show them what you’re made of, Trump fans. You’re no fools! So, yeah, Grand Rapids, Michigan, MAGAs were apparently sent into a rage over steps to ensure ease of voting in their state, and so they TOOK TO THE STREETS. (This is what conservatives deem worthy of protesting: their inability to eat at Applebee’s and their ability to avoid dying two weeks after exercising their right to vote.) The Detroit News:  The applications were burned Friday during an event called Operation Incinerator outside the DeltaPlex Arena in Walker. Many people...
    The Wisconsin Elections Commission is taking the first step toward sending absentee ballot applications to most registered voters in the crucial general election battleground state amid concerns about in-person voting during the coronavirus pandemic. The members of the bipartisan commission voted 6-0 on Wednesday to advance the plan to send applications to roughly 2.7 million of the state’s nearly 3.4 million registered voters. The unanimous vote came a week after the panel failed to reach agreement on who should receive the ballot applications. BIDEN WITH SLIGHT EDGE OVER TRUMP IN WISCONSIN: POLL The forms would be sent to all voters except those who already have requested an absentee ballot or have moved and haven't confirmed their address -- or roughly 2.7...
    Washington (CNN)The Wisconsin Election Commission has unanimously approved a measure to send absentee ballot applications to about 2.7 million voters ahead of the November general election, an official with the commission tells CNN.Ballot applications will go to all registered voters in the state, except those who have already requested an absentee ballot or have moved and haven't confirmed their address. The mailing is expected to go out in mid- to late August. The commission also approved a grant for each municipality of $200 dollars plus $1.10 for each registered voter to cover the costs.Visit CNN's Election Center for full coverage of the 2020 raceThe coronavirus pandemic has prompted several states to broaden access to voting by mail, though President Donald...