Acting Secretary of State reports no ‘major issues’ in municipal election

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HARRISBURG — An hour after polling places closed on Tuesday night, Acting Secretary of State Veronica Degraffenreid reported the municipal election in Pennsylvania finished without major incident.

“Thanks to the hard work and professionalism of county election officials and poll workers, we didn’t see any major or widespread issues,” Secretary Degraffenreid said. “No-excuse mail-in voting remained a popular option among voters in this fourth election since it first became available in Pennsylvania.”

For this election, counties sent out more than 1,009,000 mail ballots – 89 percent of which were no-excuse mail-in ballots and 11 percent of which were absentee ballots. As of mid-afternoon on Election Day, about 73 percent of the total number of mail ballots sent to voters had been returned to county boards of elections. 

Department of State staff answered 788 telephone calls via the commonwealth’s voter help line, answering questions about voter registration status, polling place location or mail-in ballots.

For voters casting a ballot in person, poll workers across Pennsylvania provided safe and secure polling places.

“I want to recognize and thank county election officials and poll workers for conducting another free, fair, and secure election during the continuing COVID-19 pandemic,” Secretary Degraffenreid said. “Election staff and volunteers deserve the gratitude and appreciation of all Pennsylvanians for their hard work, extraordinary efforts, and steadfast commitment to ensuring that their fellow citizens can safely exercise their precious right to vote.”

Secretary Degraffenreid said while there were no widespread or unusual issues, there were some of the same isolated issues that are seen in every election. For example, a few polling places did not open on time and there were several reports of electioneering inside polling places, such as campaign workers handing out materials.

Montgomery County filed a petition in the Court of Common Pleas to extend polling place hours by one hour in four precincts that opened late, and Lehigh County encountered an e-pollbook issue.

For statewide totals and county-by-county breakdowns of votes cast at polling places on Election Day for the judicial races, click HERE.

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