Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Ballot mix-ups have quick solutions — most of the time

Posted By on Tue, Oct 30, 2012 at 12:01 PM

Robert Dorrance just wants to vote.
When Robert Dorrance signed up for all-mail ballots in August he was hoping to make his civic duty a little more convenient.

But the 31-year-old Democrat says his experience thus far has been anything but easy. Around three weeks ago, he says, he received his ballot and set it aside. Late last week, he ripped it open and discovered a ballot for the June 26 Democratic primary.

"I was like, uh, this is not what I'm looking for," he remembers.

After Dorrance brought his ballot into the Independent, we called El Paso County Elections Manager Liz Olsen. Olsen explained that based on markings on the envelope (which contains no postage stamp) she believes the ballot was mailed back in June. But it's possible that it got misplaced, or was lost in the mail for a time. Olsen's computer also showed that a November election ballot had been mailed to Dorrance, though Dorrance says he hasn't received one.

Dorrance has tried to get a replacement ballot at the county clerk's office, but says he was told that a glitch in the computer system wouldn't allow one to be printed. He's been told to wait for a second mail ballot to be sent to him, but says he may just try to vote at an early voting site.

One would hope that most voters aren't experiencing the same difficulties as Dorrance.

Ordinarily, Olsen says mail ballot voters who don't receive a November ballot can simply go down to a county clerk's office and get a replacement ballot through election day, or bring an ID to an early voting site through Friday and vote there.

If you've long been registered for mail ballots and haven't yet received one, Olsen suggests getting a replacement ballot or going to an early voting site.

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