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Things to keep in mind when filling out an absentee ballot to make sure it’s counted

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LANSING, Mich. (WLNS)– 51 percent, that’s how many people in Michigan say they’re voting absentee ballot, according to a poll done by EPIC-MRA.

“We’ve issued over 32-thousand absentee ballots we already have almost 60 percent of them back already, which is over 18-thousand more ballots than we’ve ever counted before and there’s a couple weeks left for voters to return their ballots that have been issued,” said Lansing City Clerk, Chris Swope.

Some voters are voting absentee for the first time and there’s some things to keep in mind to make sure your vote is counted.

“You need to sign the outside of the envelope, we cannot count your ballot unless you sign in this little green box…. your signature, we compare that signature to your drivers license signature that’s on file,” Swope said.

If the voter has someone caring for them, they still have to sign the green box.

“Sometimes people think they can use power of attorney to sign someone that their assisted…no, even if the voter can’t really make their regular signature and only making, for example an X, the voter has to sign the green box and then the person assisting them, there’s a place for them to fill that out,” said Swope.

Also, don’t take the numbered stub off at the top of your ballot.

“Your ballot has a numbered stub on it, you want to leave that stub on the ballot, we compare that to the number, to number we issued the voter, so that’s a security measure to make sure we’re getting back the ballot that we sent to that voter,” Swope added.

If you mess up on your ballot… “we recommend that you contact us and go through the process to spoil it and get a new one, if you make a very obvious correction on that ballot, we can fix that when we count them on election day,” said Swope.

During an interview with 6 News earlier this month, Michigan Attorney General, Dana Nessel, said she recommends people mail their absentee ballots back by October 19th at the latest. Previously, absentee ballots would be counted as long as they arrived within 14 days after Election Day, as long as they were post-marked by November 2nd. A judge recently ruled that ballots must arrive by Election Day in order to be counted.

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