MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — On Friday, Minnesotans will have the ability to start voting early. That may very well be in-person at a metropolis or county election workplace. For a lot of, it should imply voting by mail.
Whereas the overwhelming majority of Minnesotans have traditionally had no issues with casting their ballots by way of the mail, 2% of the absentee ballots within the August main have been rejected at first. (Some have been later changed, which might convey down that share, however the State doesn’t observe that knowledge.)
“The entire system is designed to speak individuals by way of it,” mentioned Andy Lokken, director of elections for Dakota County.
The primary purpose absentee ballots have been rejected in August was they got here in too late. In line with election officers, that shouldn’t be a significant problem for this upcoming common election. That’s as a result of the deadline has been modified by the courts as a result of COVID-19 pandemic. Mailed-in absentee ballots should be postmarked by election day, however the ballots will nonetheless be accepted up till per week later.
The second largest purpose a mail-in absentee poll was rejected was that the voter’s signature and voter ID quantity didn’t match. The voter ID quantity is both an individual’s driver’s license/ID quantity or the final 4 digits of their Social Safety quantity. Together with a signature, it’s required for the poll to be counted.
“Individuals neglect which quantity they gave us on a regular basis, so that they name us and say which quantity did I put there, we are able to’t inform them, so we are saying to place them each,” Lokken mentioned.
The quantity three purpose: no voter signature. And, quantity 4: no witness signature.
The witness signature can be an vital change for this common election. As a result of coronavirus, it’s not required for many mail-in ballots. Witness signatures are solely required of an individual is registering to vote on the similar time.
The election workplace gives the postage for the poll. In some locations, voters will have the ability to drop off their ballots at county election workplaces or drop-boxes. Voters ought to contact their native elections workplace to see if these containers are of their space.
Lastly, if a voters makes a mistake that requires a poll to be rejected, the county elections workplace will notify the voter and ship out a brand new poll.
“We’ll do this till we run out of time,” mentioned Lokken, who encourages individuals to vote early in the event that they wish to. “You get extra possibilities when you get one thing incorrect.”