Erie County Clerk of Elections discusses recent mail-in ballot confusion

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People in Erie County received their mail-in ballots, but with some confusing information.

The ballot instructions state that there is postage needed, but the envelope says it has already been prepaid for.

According to the Clerk of Elections for Erie County, 16,000 people received the printing error on the mail-in ballots.

Even though the clerk said the postage is all paid for, this might leave a negative issue for voters to deal with.

When people in Erie County got their mail-in ballots, there was misinformation on the postage instructions.

Erie County sent the ballots out with a printing error on the instructions stating “To be sure to include postage on the return envelope.”

Regardless, the Erie County Clerk of Elections said that voters have been informed that everything has been paid for.

“The envelopes are posted, and even if they did put postage on the envelopes we would be receiving them either way, and that there will be no problems with their ballot that it would be secure and arrive on time,” said Douglas Smith, Eire County Clerk of Elections.

One local history professor said that this could be an even bigger issue for voters.

“Could this matter in kind of determining who is going to win or lose? Yeah if I were at the Erie County Democratic Party I would be doing a face palm right now because my sense right now is that this is going to hurt Democrats more than Republicans because Republicans don’t do mail-in ballots right now the way Democrats do,” said Jeff Bloodworth, History Professor at Gannon University.

“People shouldn’t let outside noise and outside distractions get in the way of voting this process no matter what some may think is secure as ever,” said Smith.

Smith stated that if they requested more ballots to correct the issue it would have delayed them a week to ten days trying to get them from the printing company.

“The election board were unanimous with their feelings that it was more important for voters to get the ballots sooner, return the ballots sooner, and we would explain the situation with the instructions,” said Smith.

An additional way to turn in your ballot is to drop it off at the courthouse.

Smith said that you can also apply for the mail-in ballot in person at the courthouse. The last day that you can request your mail-in ballot is by October 26th.

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