Washington election officials scrambling after USPS sends confusing postcards to voters

Washington voters urged to ignore absentee ballot suggestions from Postal Service postcard | Bellingham Herald

Washington voters urged to ignore absentee ballot suggestions from Postal Service postcard | Bellingham Herald

Anderson said the Pierce County Auditor's Office received no advance notice from USPS that the postcards would be sent out and worries that they will confuse people. The county called it "not relevant" and said it was "causing confusion" about the state's mail-in voting system. Voters in states with similar vote-by-mail, such as California and Washington, could also be misled by the postcard's recommendations. "This attempt at voter suppression violates the United States Constitution and federal statutes and must be stopped immediately".

"The main message of the mail-piece is that voters should plan ahead, educate themselves about voting options available in their jurisdiction, and, if they choose to vote by mail, to give themselves enough time to receive, complete and return their ballot", Postal Service spokesperson David Partenheimer said in a statement. "I will do everything in my power to stop @USPS from sending misinformation to voters".

In a statement Friday evening, the office said that state voters may soon get a postcard from the postal service that includes a recommendation voters ask for a ballot at least 15 days before the November 3 election.

"We appreciate the effort to encourage voters to plan ahead", Augino wrote to DeJoy, "but rules and requirements for voting by mail vary state by state". Those guidelines, however, don't align with Colorado's election policies.

Washington is one of only five USA states that vote exclusively by mail.

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Among its listed priorities is for eligible voters to "request a ballot", which is unnecessary in some states where elections officials send out ballots automatically to every registered voter. "The importance of this election, combined with the fact it is being held amidst a national pandemic, further heightens the need to provide correct voting information to Coloradans".

After filling them out, Sacramento County residents can either mail their ballots out to the local elections office or leave them in an official drop box - though they must be postmarked by November 3 - or drop them off at a vote center, where in-person voting will still be taking place.

Griswold claims USPS officials refused to delay or stop the campaign in Colorado since the information provided in the mailer does not apply in the state.

Griswold made headlines earlier in the week when she threatened to refer President Donald Trump to Weiser's office for criminal prosecution over his recent statements encouraging his supporters to vote by mail and in-person, which is a felony.

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