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Nearly 1,800 Marion County absentee ballots went uncounted in primary election

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Posted at 2:01 PM, Jun 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-17 14:02:01-04

INDIANAPOLIS — Nearly 1,800 Marion County absentee ballots were rejected and didn’t count for the 2020 Indiana primary election.

An absentee ballot can be rejected for a few reasons, one of which would be if the Marion County Clerk’s Office received it after the deadline of noon on Election Day.

A few days before the noon deadline, Marion County Clerk Myla Eldridge asked voters not to send completed ballots back via the mail because the office may not get it in time. Instead, Eldridge asked voters to deliver their ballot in-person on Election Day.

Voters' desire to cast their ballots from the safety social distance of their mailbox combined with coronavirus restrictions limiting the number of election staffers has overwhelmed the county's elections office.

There were 1,796 rejected absentee ballots for the primary, the clerk’s office said. But not all of them were rejected because they came in after the deadline.

“Some of the rejected ballots were rejected for other reasons, such as the voter did not sign the envelope in which the ballot was sealed,” said Russell Hollis, deputy director at the Marion County Clerk’s Office.