Absentee ballot request deadline pushed back to May 26 following judge’s ruling

The office of the Idaho secretary of state issued a communication to all 44 county clerks in the state late May 22, informing them that the deadline for absentee ballot requests in the upcoming primary election would be extended to Tuesday, May 26 at 8 p.m.

According to the statement, the extension stemmed from Idaho District Court Judge B. Lynn Winmill. The federal judge ruled in favor of U.S. Congressional candidate Nicholas Jones in his lawsuit against the secretary of state after the office’s website went down several times ahead of the previous May 19 deadline to request ballots.

Jones’ suit centered on concerns about equitable access to the online ballot request system, with Winmill declaring that “those who had access to the internet understood that they could rely on that [to request a ballot], that they could use the website, and it did not work,” the Idaho Press reported.

Secretary of State Lawerence Denney told county clerks that given Winmill’s decision, the ballot request system has been fully reopened “to all transmission means” — whether online or in paper form, delivered physically, by mail, fax or email, or by the online application system at idahovotes.gov.
All ballot requests from registered Idaho voters received by clerks after the May 19 deadline and before May 26 at 8 p.m. (local time) will be honored, according to the secretary of state’s office.
Bonner County Elections on its website stated that “there is 10 times the amount of work to do” regarding processing of the absentee ballot requests.
Meanwhile, statewide news outlets report turnout for the mail-in only May election is on track to break Idaho records for a non-gubernatorial primary race. Idaho Falls-based KIFI/KIDK TV reported more than 415,500 Idahoans had requested ballots by May 21 — approaching 46% of registered voters in the state.
Click here to request your ballot online, and visit bonnercountyid.gov/elections for more info.

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